Bunny Ribbit


This is a slider pattern used especially for largemouth bass. A slider is sometimes the answer to weary bass that may be spooked by popping bugs, or for fish chasing frogs subsurface.

How to fish:

Nelson’s Bunny Ribbit is fished silently, sliding along just below the water surface or swimming at depth. The subtle action is achieved with a simple pull and pause retrieve. The pattern can be fished with a floating line, but a sink tip, intermediate or full sinking line can be more effective. Equipped with a weed guard, the Ribbit works well fishing alongside weed beds and structure.


Nelson’s Bunny Ribbit, is the work of Carter Nelson, another well respected contributor to the world of warm water fly fishing and tying. Nelson tied a slider rather than popper because he observed that frogs would dive and swim deep when pursued by a predator. He used wool for the body because it holds water and helps to get the pattern down quickly. The legs of the Ribbit are held out to the sides by hard mono on which are threaded the rabbit zonker strips. This tying adaptation helps prevent fouling of the legs on the hook while also giving a realistic action when the pattern is retrieved.

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4 thoughts on “Bunny Ribbit

  1. Raif,
    re the Nelson’s Bunny Ribbit, exactly how do you make and attach those legs with Mason mono?

  2. Hi Arnold,

    Tie a good base layer of thread at the rear of the hook. Onto this tie on a length of mason mono, longer than will be required in the finished slider. Tie it in transverse, using tight figure-eight thread wraps. Use 140 denier thread. Once tied in, add a drop of glue to the thread wraps.

    Take the rabbit strips and cut tapered ends to them for the tie in point. Offer the strips up and gauge where they will need puncturing to obtain the spread of the legs required. The strips need puncturing twice each; once about 5mm from the tie in point and the other at a distance suited to the spread required.

    Puncture the strips then thread them onto the mono – this is where the extra length in the the mono helps. Shuffle the rabbit strips into position so their tapered ends can be tied in in front and up against the mason mono, each strip should sit centred with the mono. Tie in. Again you can add a drop of glue to the thread wraps for durability.

    Cut the mono to length. You can either melt the end of the nylon to form stop ends to each leg support or crush a short length with pliers. I prefer the former but advise wetting the fur to avoid burning chunks out of it. Now add a drop of glue where the mono passes through the rabbit strip furthest from the hook.

    I think that about covers it. I hope that helps :-)

    • So the Mason mono is on the fur side of the rabbit strip but anchored on the skin side? Is that right?

      • That’s it. It starts skin side but is threaded to fur side and then back to skin side. I’ve seen versions with the mono completely skin side and glued all along. What I describe above is the ‘original’ method.