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Lateral view of a Female Hexagenia limbata (Ephemeridae) (Hex) Mayfly Dun from the Namekagon River in Wisconsin
Hex Mayflies
Hexagenia limbata

The famous nocturnal Hex hatch of the Midwest (and a few other lucky locations) stirs to the surface mythically large brown trout that only touch streamers for the rest of the year.

Lateral view of a Psychodidae True Fly Larva from Mystery Creek #308 in Washington
This wild-looking little thing completely puzzled me. At first I was thinking beetle or month larva, until I got a look at the pictures on the computer screen. I made a couple of incorrect guesses before entomologist Greg Courtney pointed me in the right direction with Psychodidae. He suggested a possible genus of Thornburghiella, but could not rule out some other members of the tribe Pericomini.
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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Mayfly Species Paraleptophlebia volitans

Where & when

In 19 records from GBIF, adults of this species have been collected during July (37%), June (26%), August (11%), May (11%), April (11%), and October (5%).

Species Range

Physical description

Most physical descriptions on Troutnut are direct or slightly edited quotes from the original scientific sources describing or updating the species, although there may be errors in copying them to this website. Such descriptions aren't always definitive, because species often turn out to be more variable than the original describers observed. In some cases, only a single specimen was described! However, they are useful starting points.

Male Spinner

Body length: 5 mm
Wing length: 5-6 mm

A species with pale abdomen marked with purplish brown.

Head and thorax shiny brownish black. Legs dull whitish. Wings hyaline, veins pale. About 16 stigmatic cross veins; simple, slightly curved, not anastomosed. Fore wing narrowly brownish at the extreme base.

Abdomen hyaline white on segments 3-7; tergite 2 dark brown; segments 8-10 dark blackish brown, opaque. Tergites with narrow brown bands on the posterior margins, and irregular purplish brown markings dorsally and laterally on 5 and the apical segments. A series of short, lateral, longitudinal dark dashes above the spiracular line, each on the posterior margin of the tergite. Sternite 2 faintly shaded with brown; the apical sternites lighter brown than the corresponding tergites. Ganglionic patches outlined in ruddy brown. Forceps white. Penes separated for about half their length by a V-shaped notch; rather lyre-shaped in general appearance. The reflexed lobes are short, horse-shoe-shaped at the tip, and not visible from above (see fig. 133).

Start a Discussion of Paraleptophlebia volitans


  • Needham, James G., Jay R. Traver, and Yin-Chi Hsu. 1935. The Biology of Mayflies. Comstock Publishing Company, Inc.

Mayfly Species Paraleptophlebia volitans

Species Range
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