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Artistic view of a Male Pteronarcys californica (Pteronarcyidae) (Giant Salmonfly) Stonefly Adult from the Gallatin River in Montana
Salmonflies
Pteronarcys californica

The giant Salmonflies of the Western mountains are legendary for their proclivity to elicit consistent dry-fly action and ferocious strikes.

Dorsal view of a Setvena wahkeena (Perlodidae) (Wahkeena Springfly) Stonefly Nymph from Mystery Creek #199 in Washington
As far as I can tell, this species has only previously been reported from one site in Oregon along the Columbia gorge. However, the key characteristics are fairly unmistakable in all except for one minor detail:
— 4 small yellow spots on frons visible in photos
— Narrow occipital spinule row curves forward (but doesn’t quite meet on stem of ecdysial suture, as it's supposed to in this species)
— Short spinules on anterior margin of front legs
— Short rposterior row of blunt spinules on abdominal tergae, rather than elongated spinules dorsally
I caught several of these mature nymphs in the fishless, tiny headwaters of a creek high in the Wenatchee Mountains.
27" brown trout, my largest ever. It was the sub-dominant fish in its pool. After this, I hooked the bigger one, but I couldn't land it.
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Articles on the Basics

Articles on the Basics

Interpreting Hatch Information

Some important background information will help readers get the most out of information about fly hatches on this website or in any angling entomology book. Aquatic insects are complicated and unpredictable, and emergence dates, times, and habits often deviate from the "typical" behavior. Learn how to predict and understand the most common deviations.

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Understanding the Taxonomic Classification System

Learn the handy system by which biologists arrange all living things. The Aquatic Insects section of this site will be easier to navigate, and make more sense, for readers who understand the basics of the taxonomic system.

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