I’ve had a few requests on how to tie the Sponge Bob, so here goes.

Sliders have been around for a while and the Sponge Bob was merely my interpretation of classic sliders. I fish it on an intermediate (estuaries) or sinking lines (surf). The Sponge Bob is retrieved with a quick, sharp  strips and then left for a few seconds. This makes the fly dive on the pull, and then swim straight up on the pause. Check it out in a pool to see the awesome action. This is my favourite pattern with kob, and I fish it with lots of confidence.

Start the tie by tying 2 to 3 hackles on either side of the hook. Colour is not that important, but I like to keep it natural. Olive is my favourite. As far as hooks go,  I like using a Gamagatsu SL 12 in size 4/0. Secure with superglue. Dress with flash material (optional)


Next tie in a shoulder of Bucktail like you would do with a deceiver.

bucktail shoulder

bucktail shoulder

Next up is a Synthetic collar. I use SF blend and would cut a tuft into thirds to spin a dubbing brush. You can opt for ready made dubbing brushes if you are lazy.

spinning dubbing brush

spinning dubbing brush

I like the combination of olive with Bronze Back SF Blend. Bring the brush forward and allow for enough shank space to accommodate the foam head. Comb out with velcro brush.

Bronze Back SF Blend

Bronze Back SF Blend

For the slider heads I use bass popper heads. Make a hole with a heated needle and slide over the hook shank reversed backwards.

bass popper heads

bass popper heads

Cover the shank with superglue before you slide the foam head on. Stick on eyes with superglue.

Sponge Bob

Sponge Bob


Kob loves mullet and Sponge Bobs!


  1. petercoetzee 29 January, 2014 at 08:05 - Reply

    That SF works so well with the natural fibres! You find Olive the best colour?

  2. conradbotes 29 January, 2014 at 08:37 - Reply

    Hi Peter. I like olive in estuaries, especially after dark. And I’ve also caught on other natural colours like tan, brown and grey. But then again, those were the colours I use. My mates have caught on white, even after dark so I don’t believe that colour makes that much of a difference. I think the combination of materials (for bulk) and the movement (foam) are the crucial properties.

    • chris 10 February, 2015 at 13:21 - Reply

      Hi Conrad.
      Just a quick one,if you fish the spongebob in estiaries,how long leader do you use on your intermediate line.
      Im thinking with a long leader does it not float above the fish zone.
      I fish in Gouritz river and im trying my hardest to get a cob on the fly but no luck yet.
      Any tips.
      Thanks bud.

      • Conrad Botes 11 February, 2015 at 09:03

        Hi Chris

        I use a 6 to a 9ft leader, but as a general rule you can keep it short. Unfortunately kob stocks are quite depleted, so they are difficult to start with.

        My best advice is to fish sunset and sunrise. You can even try fishing for them at night. From what I can remember from my childhood days on the Gouritz, we ussually fished the bank on the Mosselbay side, directly accross from the slipway and up towards the mouth.

        Good luck!

  3. fred 29 January, 2014 at 10:12 - Reply

    love this page. Any idea who stocks those popping heads locally?

    • conradbotes 29 January, 2014 at 11:08 - Reply

      I got those popping heads from Upstream, Fred. But i think SreamX stock it as well.

      • Fred 29 January, 2014 at 15:16

        Thank you,are they situated in sa?

        Best Regards

        Fred le Roux

        Freedom Surf & Water Academy (Pty) Ltd

        e-mail: fred@freedomsurf.co.za

        Tel: 0357531271

        Cell: 0762081539

  4. conradbotes 29 January, 2014 at 16:00 - Reply

    Both are in Cape Town. Frontier in JHB should also have. Ask for compressed foam, not the polystyrene type.

  5. The Sponge Bob | Fly Or Die 11 February, 2014 at 22:23 - Reply

    […] This fly was created by Conrad Botes to target Kob in the Eastern Cape. It was first mentioned in the Complete Fly Fisherman Mag recently and after numerous requests Conrad posted a step by step on the Feathers and Fluoro Blog which can be seen here click me […]

  6. conradbotes 12 February, 2014 at 08:33 - Reply

    Check this out. Some very nice looking Sponge Bobs on Fly or Die:


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