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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.

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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Lateral view of a Female Cinygmula ramaleyi (Heptageniidae) (Small Western Gordon Quill) Mayfly Dun from Nome Creek in Alaska
This dun is almost certainly of the same species as this nymph, as it hatched in my cooler from a nearly identical nymph.
Entoman
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Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
Entoman on Jul 15, 2011July 15th, 2011, 6:06 pm EDT
Jason -

Looks like a female Cinygmula ramaleyi sub to me (one of many Little Western Red Quills). The other common Western species are larger and/or have different colored/patterned wings. While only three are common (if that word can be used), there are nine species currently listed with a NW distribution, but I don't know about AK. I guess it remains possible to be one of the less common species that may have virtually identical morphology and color.

Kurt
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
Troutnut
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Bellevue, WA

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Troutnut on Jul 15, 2011July 15th, 2011, 7:16 pm EDT
Thanks, I'll put it in there for now. I have a male that looks pretty different but probably hatched from the same group of nymphs, so it'll be interesting to compare photos after I shoot him here in a minute.
Jason Neuswanger, Ph.D.
Troutnut and salmonid ecologist
PaulRoberts
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Colorado

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PaulRoberts on Jul 15, 2011July 15th, 2011
Just great shots, Jason.
Entoman
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Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
Entoman on Jul 15, 2011July 15th, 2011, 8:12 pm EDT
Jason -

I have a male that looks pretty different but probably hatched from the same group of nymphs, so it'll be interesting to compare photos after I shoot him here in a minute.


That's interesting... I was about ready to post on the nymph photo the possibility of multiple species. It's an immature but already large enough to ecclode into a dun the size of your specimen. Also, it lacks the pale 7th and 8th tergites of ramaleyi. If I hadn't seen the dun, I would have probably thought it was reticulata, which is relatively unicolorous. The male ramaleyi dun may have a darker body and wings. Is that the difference you mentioned?

Kurt
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
Troutnut
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Bellevue, WA

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Troutnut on Jul 15, 2011July 15th, 2011, 8:34 pm EDT
The male has similar colors, but less of the dark brown, so it's lighter overall. At least, that's the impression I get from comparing the live male to these pictures. It'll be easier to compare with the pictures side-by-side when I put him online.

Also coming up: I photographed an immaculate male Ephemerella aurivillii dun that hatched out of my aquarium, and he molted into a spinner so I'll be photographing him again shortly.
Jason Neuswanger, Ph.D.
Troutnut and salmonid ecologist
Entoman
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Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
Entoman on Jul 17, 2011July 17th, 2011, 10:55 am EDT
After looking at the photos of the male dun and connecting the dots in the associated threads regarding the nymph sample it hatched from, I'm not so sure about ramaleyi any more Jason. I wouldn't move it unless better info comes along but I have to admit the wings are a lighter gray then I'm used to seeing streamside and the lack of pale abdominal segments on the nymph bothers me. Also, I'm getting mixed messages about distribution from what I've been able to find and I'm not sure that either of these two species are even in AK. Be sure to get photos of the nasty parts and perhaps Bob, Luke, or Lloyd can shed some more light?
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman

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