panfish flies

Here are the Top 5 Panfish Flies

Hook into some bream this spring.

Pound for pound, the bluegill is hardest-fighting freshwater fish. Chasing them with a fly rod? Well, that's some of the most fun you can have without breaking the law. Here are some go-to flies to get you started.

1. Foam Spider

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This is my favorite fly when fishing the colder spring waters. The subtle movement of gently dragging this fly across shallows is just too much for a hungry panfish to resist. As the sun heats up the shallow water the fish move in looking for an easy meal. Cast a foam spider towards structure and make short strips to capitalize on this transition.

2. Floating Popper

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When you find a school of bream hanging in weed beds it's time to switch to a popper. Even if the weeds are 10 feet below the surface the fish will hear and hit the popper. If you're lucky enough to find bedding bluegills drop this on the edge and pick them off. Just be ready for a bonus bass or two.

3. Elk Hair Caddis Black Fly

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If you don't have a fly rod you're screwing yourself out of some fun. However you can still use the black fly on a spinning rod with great success. If you do have a fly rod you can still have serious success moving a black fly in shallow water. Focus on fishing this fly around submerged structure and pull in your catches. It's that simple.

4. Woolly Worm

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Simply put, this fly catches fish. When nothing else works, cast out a woolly worm and wait. I prefer to twitch it for stubborn suspended bluegills, but just about anything will hit this.

5. Clouser Minnow

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If perch or crappie are more your game, then a Clouser will catch them. Slowly swimming this fly around weed edges will produce bite after bite. Just like the popper be ready for some bonus fish. Bass, pike, and catfish won't be able to resist the shimmer and slow swim of this fly.