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Lateral view of a Male Baetis (Baetidae) (Blue-Winged Olive) Mayfly Dun from Mystery Creek #43 in New York
Blue-winged Olives

Tiny Baetis mayflies are perhaps the most commonly encountered and imitated by anglers on all American trout streams due to their great abundance, widespread distribution, and trout-friendly emergence habits.

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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Portage, PA

Posts: 437
Lastchance on Dec 12, 2008December 12th, 2008, 10:57 am EST
What sizes are midges in PA and the Northeast in general? I see a lot of patterns and they call for midge larva/pupa in sizes 16, 18, 20. I never thought midges were that big. Am I missing something?
Portage, PA

Posts: 437
Lastchance on Dec 12, 2008December 12th, 2008, 12:45 pm EST
Let me answer my own question after deciding to use this site and read about midges for myself. Sorry, I should have thought of that first. It seems that midges are mostly sizes 22 and smaller. Some are as big as 14s.
Does any body fish midge larva or pupa's regularly?
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Site Editor
Plano, TX

Posts: 1311
Taxon on Dec 12, 2008December 12th, 2008, 3:27 pm EST

Don't know about PA, but here in WA, there is a large contingent of fly fishers using Chironomid (a member of True Fly family Chironomidae) larval and pupal imitations in lakes, and they are hugely successful.

In BC, they also have some semi-voltine (one generation every 2 years) Chironomid species (referred to as "Bombers"), which attain a pupal length of ~28 mm, and whose imitations are tied on a #8 3XL hooks.
Best regards,
Roger Rohrbeck
Martinlf's profile picture
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3047
Martinlf on Dec 12, 2008December 12th, 2008, 3:58 pm EST
Lastchance, when I fish midges in PA spring creeks and tailwaters in the winter, size 20 is big. There are some 20's that come off in State College's Spring Creek in January and February, but I more often am throwing smaller, down to size 26. These midges are typically grey or black, though I've seen olive ones on the Tulpehocken in January. And there's a tiny white midge that comes off on Spring and other mid-state streams just after blue winged olives, probably in April that's a size 28 or smaller. I've seen these tiny white midges other times also, even in summer on the Little J and other streams. I like simple little parachutes, but sometimes drop a zebra midge off the bend. Small griffeth's gnats work well too.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
JAD's profile picture
Alexandria Pa

Posts: 362
JAD on Dec 13, 2008December 13th, 2008, 6:03 am EST

Take a look at this--http://winglesswets.forumwww.com/confused-midge-sizes-t234.html


They fasten red (crimson red) wool around a hook, and fix onto the wool two feathers which grow under a cock’s wattles, and which in colour are like wax.
Radcliffe's Fishing from the Earliest Times,
Posts: 31
GoofusBug on Jan 1, 2009January 1st, 2009, 4:41 pm EST
From my experience there's no such thing as too small when fishing true midges. There have been many times when my size 22 white midge looked big compared to what the trout were taking.

Posts: 4
Baetis89 on Jan 3, 2009January 3rd, 2009, 3:34 am EST
Try a size 10 renegade, griffiths gnat or buzz ball and life becomes way easier. Drop a size 26 sparkle midge off the back about 16 inches. I like that sparkle cuz you can see it well and the antron covers anything that may be crippled in the film.
Posts: 13
DSFlyman on Jan 9, 2009January 9th, 2009, 1:55 pm EST
If none of the above works, try stripping a size 8 wooly bugger. You may trigger an aggressive strike, or find some fish looking for a main course!
DS Flyman

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