Header image
Enter a name
Artistic view of a Male Pteronarcys californica (Pteronarcyidae) (Giant Salmonfly) Stonefly Adult from the Gallatin River in Montana
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 Grammotaulius betteni (Limnephilidae) (Northern Caddisfly) Caddisfly Larva from the Yakima River in Washington
This is a striking caddis larva with an interesting color pattern on the head. Here are some characteristics I was able to see under the microscope, but could not easily expose for a picture:
- The prosternal horn is present.
- The mandible is clearly toothed, not formed into a uniform scraper blade.
- The seems to be only 2 major setae on the ventral edge of the hind femur.
- Chloride epithelia seem to be absent from the dorsal side of any abdominal segments.
Based on these characteristics and the ones more easily visible from the pictures, this seems to be Grammotaulius. The key's description of the case is spot-on: "Case cylindrical, made of longitudinally arranged sedge or similar leaves," as is the description of the markings on the head, "Dorsum of head light brownish yellow with numerous discrete, small, dark spots." The spot pattern on the head is a very good match to figure 19.312 of Merritt R.W., Cummins, K.W., and Berg, M.B. (2019). The species ID is based on Grammotaulius betteni being the only species of this genus known in Washington state.
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.
Troutnut is a project started in 2003 by salmonid ecologist Jason "Troutnut" Neuswanger to help anglers and fly tyers unabashedly embrace the entomological side of the sport. Learn more about Troutnut or support the project for an enhanced experience here.

This topic is about the Insect Family Corydalidae

Hellgrammites are the vicious larvae of the Dobsonflies, some of the only trout stream insects which pose a biting threat to the angler. The pincers of the adult are even more frightening that the larva's, and they're aggressive enough to use them once in a while.

This family's life cycle does not create good dry fly opportunities, but the larvae may be eaten by trout year-round. They are a secret told only by stomach samples of well-fed trout.

Example specimens


Posts: 4
Raider83 on Jun 27, 2008June 27th, 2008, 6:21 am EDT
I am an amatuer entomologist and am searching for adult dobsonflies. I think this is the right time of year for dobsonflies in Indiana. what are some ideal places and times to look? I know they like lights. If anyone lives in Indiana what are good places to look? I know you guys know your stuff when it comes to aquatic insect hatches, so I thought I would ask. TIA
Site Editor
"Bear Swamp," PA

Posts: 1681
GONZO on Jun 27, 2008June 27th, 2008, 10:56 am EDT
I would look for lights near a fairly fast, rocky stretch of a low elevation river. (A gas station would be good.) In addition, Dobsonflies like to lay their eggs in the leaves of overhanging trees, on bridge abutments, or on vertical rock walls--places where the hatching larvae can fall into the water. However, these spots make for trickier collecting, especially after dark. Good hunting.
Grants Pass, OR

Posts: 302
Creno on Jun 27, 2008June 27th, 2008, 2:42 pm EDT
And they often land in the bushes next to the light, not on the brightest part. Put your back to the light and look at the overhanging bushes and the ground. If you have an power inverter drive to a crick access where there are no other lights but a good view of the crick (the boat launch) and take a large 110 bulb, I use a mercury vapor, and hang it in a tree by the crick. If you hang a sheet a couple feet from the bulb so the bulb is between the crick and the sheet you will be overwhelmed with critters. And remember to look behind the sheet.
Konchu's profile picture
Site Editor

Posts: 498
Konchu on Jun 28, 2008June 28th, 2008, 2:29 am EDT
I've collected most of mine from around security lights of light-colored buildings that are located near suitable larval habitat.

The mv light and sheet is a good idea. Not only should you check behind the sheet, but you need to check the ground and brush several feet away from the sheet. Not everything comes directly to the light.
Konchu's profile picture
Site Editor

Posts: 498
Konchu on Jun 30, 2008June 30th, 2008, 6:59 am EDT
I went to one of my adult Megaloptera collecting spots last Saturday (June 28), and sure enough, I found one flying around, about 4:30 Daylight Time. I don't know what about this spot is good for the adults, but I find them there frequently. It is an old church cemetery, about 1/2 mile from the nearest stream of any size.

Posts: 1
Majj25 on Jul 1, 2008July 1st, 2008, 12:48 pm EDT
i have an adult dobson fly. slighty larger than 4 inches, with its pinchers ( or whatever they are called) at least an inch in length. id be more than happy to send it to you. im not sure if you want it alive though. its alive now. but if it dies i could package it and send it to you. not really sure how id do that. maybe you would know? i just happened to find this in my gazebo, naturally freaked out because ive never seen anything like it before.researched it and found this site. seattle2679@yahoo.com maggie

Posts: 4
Raider83 on Jul 2, 2008July 2nd, 2008, 12:34 pm EDT
Maggie If you really want to send it to me(Dead) then go ahead and try. Packaging wise, I would put in a small plastic container that it fits in and gently surround it with cotton balls to protect it. It will most likely break somehow, but its worth a shot if you still have it. If it flew away, thanks anyway for your generous offer.
Pleasant Gap, PA

Posts: 1197
Shawnny3 on Jul 3, 2008July 3rd, 2008, 6:38 am EDT
Nah, have some fun with the postman and send it alive. I'm thinking a transparent container with air holes punched in it.

Jewelry-Quality Artistic Salmon Flies, by Shawn Davis

Quick Reply

Related Discussions

Last Reply
Mar 28, 2014
by Taxon
May 10, 2007
by Taxon
Dec 2, 2007
by JAD
Nov 5, 2007
by Martinlf
Troutnut.com is copyright © 2004-2024 (email Jason). privacy policy