Due to the anatomy of their mouths, redfish primarily feed off the bottom. In my humble opinion, seeing a redfish tail in shallow water is one of the coolest visuals in fly-fishing. No matter how many times you see it, it never gets old. I don’t know exactly how long redfish have existed, but what I do know is that they have adapted well in the art of eating. While they are anatomically designed to feed on the bottom, they do not discriminate against forage swimming in the middle or even the top of the water column. That being said, they will eat nonweighted baitfish and streamer-style flies in addition to crab and shrimp patterns. In some cases, topwater flies will draw favorable reactions. Some of the more comical redfish experiences I’ve witnessed have been watching redfish try to eat flies on the surface. Their broad head and shoulders push a big and unmistakable wake, which pushes topwater flies away. No matter how much they track and try to eat them, they just keep pushing them away from their mouths. It’s almost like dangling carrots in front of mules — they keep trying for them but they just can’t get them. The other topwater error that redfish often make is undershooting and biting a foot in front of the fly — that one cracks me up every time. When it comes to tying redfish flies, don’t limit your imagination.