Header image
Enter a name
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.

Case view of a Pycnopsyche guttifera (Limnephilidae) (Great Autumn Brown Sedge) Caddisfly Larva from the Yakima River in Washington
It's only barely visible in one of my pictures, but I confirmed under the microscope that this one has a prosternal horn and the antennae are mid-way between the eyes and front of the head capsule.

I'm calling this one Pycnopsyche, but it's a bit perplexing. It seems to key definitively to at least Couplet 8 of the Key to Genera of Limnephilidae Larvae. That narrows it down to three genera, and the case seems wrong for the other two. The case looks right for Pycnopsyche, and it fits one of the key characteristics: "Abdominal sternum II without chloride epithelium and abdominal segment IX with only single seta on each side of dorsal sclerite." However, the characteristic "metanotal sa1 sclerites not fused, although often contiguous" does not seem to fit well. Those sclerites sure look fused to me, although I can make out a thin groove in the touching halves in the anterior half under the microscope. Perhaps this is a regional variation.

The only species of Pycnopsyche documented in Washington state is Pycnopsyche guttifera, and the colors and markings around the head of this specimen seem to match very well a specimen of that species from Massachusetts on Bugguide. So I am placing it in that species for now.

Whatever species this is, I photographed another specimen of seemingly the same species from the same spot a couple months later.
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.

JOHNW's profile picture
Chambersburg, PA

Posts: 452
JOHNW on May 14, 2011May 14th, 2011, 5:46 pm EDT
OK so last year during the sulphurs I fell in love with this pattern tied on a Partridge 15BN for fussy fish.
Now as I am gearing up for the big bug time of year I'm trying to figure out the materials for a green drake version. I think I have the thorax, hackle and wing down however the abdomen is proving a challenge. The biggest problem is deciding on the color vs. proportion thing.

For the sulphurs and smaller mayflies I just use mayfly brown staight z-lon and spin it tight and then wrap. However on the drake sized hook (subbing a #8 TMR 200R for the partridge) this leaves tha abdomen rediculously skinny as compared to the real thing and the rest of the fly.
Any suggestions?
"old habits are hard to kill once you have gray in your beard" -Old Red Barn
Taxon's profile picture
Site Editor
Plano, TX

Posts: 1311
Taxon on May 14, 2011May 14th, 2011, 10:14 pm EDT
Hi John-

Based on your location, I will assume you are interested tying a Quigley Cripple pattern to imitate an emerging Ephemera guttulata nymph whose subimaginal abdomen is stuck in (or has not yet been withdrawn from) its nymphal abdomen, which looks like this:

So, were it me, I would probably use medium tan marabou counter-wrapped with ribbing of light tan thread, or perhaps gold wire for increased durability.
Best regards,
Roger Rohrbeck
JOHNW's profile picture
Chambersburg, PA

Posts: 452
JOHNW on May 15, 2011May 15th, 2011, 10:24 am EDT
Thanks Roger!
I suppose I should have been a little more clear on exactly which Green Drake I was referring to; fortunatly your powers of deduction are spot on.

That seems like it would be the ticket.
"old habits are hard to kill once you have gray in your beard" -Old Red Barn

Quick Reply

Related Discussions

Last Reply
May 11, 2013
by DayTripper
Jul 16, 2008
by Ozzie
Jun 2, 2011
by Brookyman
Jun 11, 2008
by DayTripper
Troutnut.com is copyright © 2004-2023 (email Jason). privacy policy