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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 Skwala (Perlodidae) (Large Springfly) Stonefly Nymph from the Yakima River in Washington
This Skwala nymph still has a couple months left to go before hatching, but it's still a good representative of its species, which was extremely abundant in my sample for a stonefly of this size. It's obvious why the Yakima is known for its Skwala hatch.
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.

Oldredbarn
Oldredbarn's profile picture
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Oldredbarn on Aug 8, 2010August 8th, 2010, 4:19 pm EDT
Guys if you insist on teasing us in Gonzo/Shawney-ese and not explaining what you two are hinting at, I'm going to insist you take this private...:) You know that curiosity will sure enough kill the cat even when he's a hip-cat from Detroit...

I know we are off on our own here and way off course in terms of Tiger Trout etc, but my experiences with beetles hasn't always been what I would of hoped...I have this box filled with beautiful imitations...but...I think I believe in that old idea that you need to toss a fly on the terminal end of your tackle with confidence and they haven't earned mine. To the point I seldom think of them maybe as much as I should...

Maybe I just don't get out on a good trout stream in the summer enough these days.

Spence



"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
Dryfly
rochester mn

Posts: 133
Dryfly on Aug 8, 2010August 8th, 2010, 4:50 pm EDT
Beetles are dyno-mite right now. Easy to tie, easy to fish, and best yet the fish like them...a lot.

Shawnny3
Moderator
Pleasant Gap, PA

Posts: 1197
Shawnny3 on Aug 9, 2010August 9th, 2010, 2:16 am EDT
Thank you, Gonzo, for pointing out my hypocrisy without really probing its depths. You could have just as easily made reference to the synthetic rod, line, leader, and tippet I use. Come to think of it, a few feathers and fur are often the only natural thing I throw at the poor fish. So I'm a lot farther down the slope than the use of a little vernille might imply.

I do have to add, however, that I recently came up with an idea for how to make durable, high-floating beetle imitations naturally. I will say no more, because I have yet to even experiment with the material yet, but I hope to come up with something truly novel and practical with a natural material, if that's even possible. I'll leave it that cryptic for now. Sorry, Spence.

By the way, the teasing has only to do with Gonzo's affinity for and my aversion to synthetics. I will say about Gonzo that he is one of very few people who has been truly creative with synthetics, and creativity is the aspect of flytying I most admire. I confess I even have a few of his dry-fly patterns in my box.

-Shawn
Jewelry-Quality Artistic Salmon Flies, by Shawn Davis
www.davisflydesigns.com
Oldredbarn
Oldredbarn's profile picture
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Oldredbarn on Aug 9, 2010August 9th, 2010, 3:11 am EDT
aversion to synthetics


Shawn,

Considering the vegetarian thing, it's a bit odd, but I'm in the natural materials camp. My favorite dry fly dubbing is beaver.

I spent this past weekend tying up some White Flies and I finally got around to trying out some new stuff. I discriminate somehow between small-mouth and trout and I will opening admit this prejudice, but I can't really justify it in any rational way.

Except for an egg sack on some spinners (I know...Over kill concerning bass) everything was plastic of some sort. I tied up some emergers, parachutes, and some spinners...I used Hi-Viz for posts and wings, Micro-Fibbets (sp?) for tails, Super-Fine dubbing...I forgot the hackle was natural. (After I posted this I remembered duck flank fibers on the emergers for tails...)

They look good but I'm not completely sold on the Hi-Viz spent wings...We will see soon and I'll report back. I will admit that the materials are easy enough to use...Anyway! I guess if you and Gonzo insist on blowing sweet nothings in to each others ears, in public, we can always just change the channel, eh...:)

Spence

I have just noticed that I have blown by 400 posts! Can this be? I think it's time to scale back abit and see if I can drop the third person stuff in regards to Spence...I have always told the ladies that I was multi-dimensional, but multiple-personalities... probably not so good to incourage it...Here's to a unified-field-theory...Ha, ha...Is that even possible for a guy who is so full of opposites and contadictions??? It's a miracle I can find my way to work in the morning...
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
SlateDrake9
Potter County, PA

Posts: 144
SlateDrake9 on Aug 9, 2010August 9th, 2010, 6:46 am EDT
Man. Go away for a couple of days and the place went even further off track than I took it with my ranting.
Fishing with bait is like swearing in church.
-- Slate Drake
Shawnny3
Moderator
Pleasant Gap, PA

Posts: 1197
Shawnny3 on Aug 9, 2010August 9th, 2010, 10:52 am EDT
I'm thinking about sending Jason a PM and asking him to rename and categorize this thread more appropriately, just to mess with him.

-Shawn
Jewelry-Quality Artistic Salmon Flies, by Shawn Davis
www.davisflydesigns.com
Oldredbarn
Oldredbarn's profile picture
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Oldredbarn on Aug 9, 2010August 9th, 2010, 11:00 am EDT
Sorry B.J. & Shawn...I should somehow exibit a tad more discipline! I'm so lacking in it I had to look up the word because I had forgotten how it's spelled...I'm not sure either how you actually end a thread...Do they just go on and on and on??? Just say no Spence...Just say no! Let it just peter on out.

Spence
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
SlateDrake9
Potter County, PA

Posts: 144
SlateDrake9 on Aug 9, 2010August 9th, 2010, 11:29 am EDT
No reason to be sorry. I found what I read to rather interesting. I was just surprised to see how much more was here since I last posted. Keep it going by all means. Not much else to do until the trout waters become trout waters again.
Fishing with bait is like swearing in church.
-- Slate Drake
Motrout
Motrout's profile picture
Posts: 319
Motrout on Aug 9, 2010August 9th, 2010, 12:16 pm EDT
Slate Drake said"NONE OF THIS WILL MATTER AS LONG AS THE MARCELLUS SHALE DRILLING IS HAPPENING IN PENNSYLVANIA. If what this industry puts into the ground that WILL find its way into our waters doesn't kill us, it will surely kill the insects and fish."

I know this thread has gone about 100 other directions since this but I had to respond to this post. The hydro-frackers are now trying to move into the Ozarks (my backyard) and you'd better believe they'll do it too. The politicians (and the general public) around here are about as environmentally friendly as the BP management and many of the people around here are desperate for jobs. So I guess I am now another angler who has to worry about big energy ruining his fishing. The conservation community around here (including myself) is trying to fight them, but with the political climate around here being what it is, what chance do we have? It's a constant battle and we always have to keep our eyes open. You can pretty much assume that corporate America is constantly trying to commit some environmental atrocity in our backyards.

As for the original topic of Tiger trout... I wouldn't mind catching one, but as a rule, I don't really like unnatural hatchery products.
"I don't know what fly fishing teaches us, but I think it's something we need to know."-John Gierach
http://fishingintheozarks.blogspot.com/
Shawnny3
Moderator
Pleasant Gap, PA

Posts: 1197
Shawnny3 on Aug 9, 2010August 9th, 2010, 12:49 pm EDT
Actually, Motrout, the Tiger can occur in the wild, even though the fish I caught was almost assuredly not spawned in the stream. I suppose that Tigers couldn't "naturally occur" in our waters at all, though, without people intentionally transporting browns here. So maybe it isn't natural after all.

Here's another point to ponder (and potentially spin this thread even further out of control): What constitutes an invasive species? Is it simply whether or not it is welcomed by the majority of people? I, like most of you, love brown trout, but I don't love snakeheads. A small minority, however, loves snakeheads, and it only takes a small minority to introduce an invasive species. So, are both fish invasive or is only the snakehead invasive?

-Shawn
Jewelry-Quality Artistic Salmon Flies, by Shawn Davis
www.davisflydesigns.com
Gutcutter
Gutcutter's profile picture
Pennsylvania

Posts: 470
Gutcutter on Aug 9, 2010August 9th, 2010, 1:04 pm EDT
can the pa fish commission come up with a glow-in-the-dark golden tiger rainbrook trout that eats snakeheads?
call starkist
All men who fish may in turn be divided into two parts: those who fish for trout and those who don't. Trout fishermen are a race apart: they are a dedicated crew- indolent, improvident, and quietly mad.

-Robert Traver, Trout Madness
Oldredbarn
Oldredbarn's profile picture
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Oldredbarn on Aug 9, 2010August 9th, 2010, 1:29 pm EDT
What constitutes an invasive species?


Shawn,

I'm afraid we humans are the invasive species!

Spence

How's that for short and not so sweet and un-Spence-like? Shit! There's that third person thing again...
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
Motrout
Motrout's profile picture
Posts: 319
Motrout on Aug 9, 2010August 9th, 2010, 3:14 pm EDT
"Actually, Motrout, the Tiger can occur in the wild"

I guess that's true-I just hadn't thought of it. In that way it is at least a bit better than the glow in the dark golden rainbows.
"I don't know what fly fishing teaches us, but I think it's something we need to know."-John Gierach
http://fishingintheozarks.blogspot.com/
Shawnny3
Moderator
Pleasant Gap, PA

Posts: 1197
Shawnny3 on Aug 9, 2010August 9th, 2010, 3:26 pm EDT
That the tiger can occur in the wild, and that Spring Creek has very, very few brook trout (undoubtedly fewer than one fish in a thousand), is what had me excited about my fish in the first place - a naturally occurring tiger in that stream would be an extremely rare fish. That the more logical explanation by far is that it swam up from a stocked stream or escaped from a hatchery makes it much less glorious an accomplishment (if you can call getting lucky enough to catch a certain 10-inch fish an accomplishment at all) is kind of sad, but it's still a pretty rare trout, and my first. This sad near-fact, though, just makes me want all the more to find streams where wild brookies and browns coexist and see if I can catch a wild tiger, and I have a lifetime to try. That's an exciting challenge I love the idea of taking on.

-Shawn
Jewelry-Quality Artistic Salmon Flies, by Shawn Davis
www.davisflydesigns.com
SlateDrake9
Potter County, PA

Posts: 144
SlateDrake9 on Aug 10, 2010August 10th, 2010, 2:37 am EDT
Wild tigers are pretty rare. I was lucky enough to catch one, I think, about 10 years ago. Sadly this was before I owned a camera to carry on the streams. I believe he was wild as he was caught in a trib far up on a long stream section that doesn't get stocked for probably 10-11 miles, but has a high population of brookies and browns. He was 5-6 inches long. I didn't know what he was for a couple of years until I saw a picture of one in a fly shop and asked what type of fish it was. Then I found out it was a tiger.

I don't usually catch any stocked trout in this area, but about 4 miles down from the trib mouth, still 5-6 miles above where it is last stocked I did catch a large day-glo golden rainbow in a deep undercut. She went a solid 22 inches. When I first saw her, I thought it was a plastic bag stuck on root in the bottom of the hole. I drifted though, the bag moved and took my nymph. Quite a fight on a one weight.
Fishing with bait is like swearing in church.
-- Slate Drake
Wbranch
Wbranch's profile picture
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2635
Wbranch on Aug 10, 2010August 10th, 2010, 3:27 am EDT
I caught a 17.38" Tiger two years ago on a popular NYS river. I wrote an email to the NYS Fish Commission and they said that they had never stocks Tigers into that particular river. However the lower part of the river borders with PA and I know that PA has stocked some in past years but never as big as the one I caught. The NYS biologist told me that it would be extremely rare to catch a wild Tiger that was the offspring of a brown trout/brook trout mating.

Here is a picture I posted once before

Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
SlateDrake9
Potter County, PA

Posts: 144
SlateDrake9 on Aug 10, 2010August 10th, 2010, 4:12 am EDT
17.38 inches. That's some impressive measuring.
Fishing with bait is like swearing in church.
-- Slate Drake
Motrout
Motrout's profile picture
Posts: 319
Motrout on Aug 10, 2010August 10th, 2010, 4:53 am EDT
At least they are a pretty fish unlike some of the hatchery creations. I bet a wild one would be a real knock out.
"I don't know what fly fishing teaches us, but I think it's something we need to know."-John Gierach
http://fishingintheozarks.blogspot.com/
Oldredbarn
Oldredbarn's profile picture
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Oldredbarn on Aug 10, 2010August 10th, 2010, 6:46 am EDT
Nice fish there Matt! You can see the white forward trim on the lower fins like a Brook Trout...I would love to see one in the fall...There is hardy anything as pretty as a male Brook trout in mating colors...IMHO.

Spence
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
GONZO
Site Editor
"Bear Swamp," PA

Posts: 1681
GONZO on Aug 10, 2010August 10th, 2010, 9:18 am EDT
Now that we're back on topic, I thought I'd share two interesting related links.

When Francis Day described experiments with these crosses in the late 19th century, the more successful cross (male brook X female brown) was called a "zebra," and the less successful cross (male brown X female brook) was called a "leopard." The first link has a little photo of a wild tiger and mentions the even rarer (leopard) cross:
http://www.tunaugpomp.org/Sea-run%20Trout%20Program.htm

Although it seems very doubtful that the curious fish pictured in the next link are tigers (and the writer mistakenly claims that the tiger is strictly a hatchery product), it is interesting to see somewhat similar markings occurring in what is possibly just an unusual lake trout morph:
http://www.brooktrout.ca/tiger-trout.htm

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