Veteran ice fisherman have long known that scuds (or freshwater shrimp) are a favorite food for big panfish and trout under the ice. The ‘Gill Shrimp ice fly is a close imitation of a scud, enticing finicky slab bluegills, crappies, and trout with life-like chickabou feathers that breathe convincingly. Fished in a "Michigan rig" (tying an ice fly a few inches above a quick-sinking tungsten jig with either a palomar knot or a dropper tag) while tight lining or in a dropshot rig, ice flies are perfect for fooling wary winter panfish.
Big panfish and trout will recognize the big eyes and curled position of the ‘Gill Shrimp, which provide key triggers for fooling wary fish. You just can't beat the tantilizing movement and realism of an ice fly for slab bluegills or crappies through the ice. These flies often turn negative fish that reject the baited jig into biters, a situation common with finicky cold front panfish. If your local state regulations do not allow two hooks on one line, a drop shot rig is equally effective. Anglers fishing with ice flies and the tight line technique will often out fish the guy using standard methods with just bait.