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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.

Dorsal view of a Epeorus albertae (Heptageniidae) (Pink Lady) Mayfly Nymph from the East Fork Issaquah Creek in Washington
This specimen keys to the Epeorus albertae group of species. Of the five species in that group, the two known in Washington state are Epeorus albertae and Epeorus dulciana. Of the two, albertae has been collected in vastly more locations in Washington than dulciana, suggesting it is far more common. On that basis alone I'm tentatively putting this nymph in albertae, with the large caveat that there's no real information to rule out dulciana.
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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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

Buggy
Posts: 1
Buggy on Apr 19, 2009April 19th, 2009, 4:09 am EDT
I am from ontario canada and i pick hellgrammites for a local bait shop owner i was just wondering when is the earliest i could start picking...last year i started in june but i hear you can start sooner when is the earliest i can do this??? thanks for your help

serious picker
GONZO
Site Editor
"Bear Swamp," PA

Posts: 1681
GONZO on Apr 19, 2009April 19th, 2009, 7:30 am EDT
Buggy,

I don't know what Ontario regulations say about "picking" these larvae. However, provided that there is no prohibition against it, hellgrammites can be found year-round. The larvae spend as much as three years in the aquatic stage, so individuals of various generations (sizes) are available to you (and the fish) at any time.

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