Salt Water Fly Fishing – 2012 Target – Mullet

River Douglas creek for Mullet

This years target species for sea fishing is the Mullet, thin or thick lipped, we don’t care. We’ve tried and tried to get one of these and we’ve been so very close but this is the year , I can feel it. We’ve a fairly good ‘Mullety’ type river near us, the River Douglas which I’m convinced will produce Mullet as the tide floods into the small creeks but the water isn’t very clear so we’ll have to ‘cheat’ and use float fishing techniques.

Our aim though, and it has been for some time now, is to catch one of these beautiful fish on the fly, and it didn’t help my obsession one bit when I came across this video by Matt Dunkinson with support from Orvis called ‘Against the Tide’ – enjoy…

So the burning question is where… where is the water clear enough for the Mullet to see the fly and undisturbed to give us fair chance of not spooking them. The answer is of course North Wales and Anglesey. We’ve seen them, dammit we’ve almost trod on them they’ve been that close but this year we’ve done a bit more research into what flies to use and in May, when we visit Anglesey for the first time in 2012 we’ll be hunting out likely spots ready for our main 2 week holiday in the summer.

We’ll be well prepared but whether we succeed only time will tell, but it won’t be for lack of trying.


  1. harry leyland said:

    Tried a couple of times with ground bait/bread flake/maggot and then with fly in Freckleton creek,large shoals swim up through the summer. Water tends to be to coloured for fly but not tried serious groundbaiting yet. Work in progress Managed two mullet at Arnside in 2010 on bread flake. Fished the Douglas several times for flounder but did not notice mullet ,should be there,right opp Freckleton creek.
    Harry New Longton

    April 19, 2012
  2. Stu said:

    Hi Harry

    Sounds like you’ve got the same sort of plan as I have. We’ll just have to wait for the weather to warm up a bit before we can set things in motion.

    April 19, 2012
  3. Joe Walker said:

    Two years ago, mullet on the fly was my goal. Two years on, that proved to be a cathartic decision…fly-fishing for mullet is seriously addictive, and fly fishing for Bass has taken a firm second place! The potential for a double figure mullet (and the fight!) far outstrips that for a bass. Since my first fish, a 3lb thick-lip in a small estuary in South Wales 18 months ago, I’ve had numerous successes, with my best thus far running in at just over 6.5lb. The nice thing is I haven’t had to resort to bread flies but have had all on mainly shrimp-type patterns. I’ve also had Golden Grey mullet too, and a Thin-lip on the fly is only a matter of time, so the aim now is to achieve the ultimate challenge – the ‘Mullet Grandslam’ – all three species on the fly in a single day! 🙂

    Good luck with your quest – once you get the measure of them, mullet will be a permanent resident on your target list; there are few more sporting opportunities in UK saltwater than mullet on the fly!

    April 20, 2012
  4. Stu said:

    Hi Joe

    Thanks for visiting and you’re comments are spot on. We’re actually going to Anglesey in a couple of weeks, far to early for Mullet on the fly but we’ll be able to hunt out a few likely haunts while targeting Bass with peeler crab.

    What flies have you had success on? I know down south they catch on red ribbed Diawl Bach so i was going to try those but any suggestions would be welcome.

    We’ve yet to catch any saltwater fish on the fly but this year is going to be the one 🙂

    April 20, 2012
  5. Kevin Savill said:

    I’ve been viewing huge mullet in the estuaries on the Isle Of Wight but am still perplexed by what fly to use and what retrieve? I note the comment for the red ribbed Diawal. I have used very small stillwater shrimp patterns but think they are too brown for the estuary waters. What are they naturally feeding on?

    May 18, 2012
  6. Stu said:

    Hi Kevin

    I’m not sure what they’re feeding on as they sift mud – there’s an article in this months (and next months) Sea Angler though so have a read – I’m still hopeful that we’ll get one this year 🙂

    May 18, 2012
  7. gerard said:

    hi there wat shrimp paterines was you using for the mullet having a go this summer for them .gerard

    May 11, 2013
    • Stu said:

      Hi Gerard,

      We tried all sorts of things A&D didn’t have much luck with any of them although we have since found a few better spots on Anglesey so well be trying again this summer. The main things we tried were red tags, red ribbed db’s, glass beaded db variants and red marabou tailed lures. I think we’ll probably try similar this year but maybe add some flexiflos bloodworms patterns in to the mix.

      Mullet flys

      May 13, 2013
  8. david sheriff said:

    The Mullet at sandbanks in Poole are there in there thousands at the moment they are feeding on weed fly a very small black fly which is impossible to imitate but try small spider fly and red tags about 2 inches under the surface with a muddler on the top dropper holding it high leting Breeze drift it round … O and loads of patients ..

    July 20, 2013

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