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Artistic view of a Male Pteronarcys californica (Pteronarcyidae) (Giant Salmonfly) Stonefly Adult from the Gallatin River in Montana
Salmonflies
Pteronarcys californica

The giant Salmonflies of the Western mountains are legendary for their proclivity to elicit consistent dry-fly action and ferocious strikes.

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.

Lateral view of a Brachycentrus appalachia (Brachycentridae) (Apple Caddis) Caddisfly Adult from the Beaverkill River in New York
Gfallon58
NE Philly

Posts: 2
Gfallon58 on Feb 22, 2007February 22nd, 2007, 2:45 am EST
I was on Bald Eagle Creek around Milesburg last year in May. It was mid morning and fish were rising everywhere. I saw caddis in the air but the rises weren't splashy. Every caddis pattern I tried, fish would rise to and refuse so I'm fairly certain they were taking caddis. Do the trout up there get selective to egg sac or spent wings because they were the only types I didn't have to try. I'm not even sure they were Grannoms, so does anyone know what other caddis hatch around May 20th? This year I'll be there from May 12 to 19, so any ideas would be terrific and much appreciated. Thanks George.
GONZO
Site Editor
"Bear Swamp," PA

Posts: 1681
GONZO on Feb 22, 2007February 22nd, 2007, 3:25 am EST
Hi George,

May 20th seems rather late for most PA grannom hatches. We often have very strong spotted sedge (Hydropsyche/Ceratopsyche) activity around that time. Matching the proper stage (emerging pupae, egg-laying adults, spent adults) is often critical to success during many caddisfly hatches. If you were seeing a lot of adults in the air, you may have been fishing during the egg-laying phase.
Gfallon58
NE Philly

Posts: 2
Gfallon58 on Feb 22, 2007February 22nd, 2007, 4:10 am EST
Yeah, like I said I wasn't sure it was the grannom. I generally fish mayfly hatches but have had some luck with caddis adults. It was extremmely frustrating to watch several fish (some big) rise under the fly only to let it pass right by. I wanted to be prepared this year. Does mid morning sound right for egg laying time of day? If memory serves me it was a fairly sunny morning too.

As you can tell I'm new to this site and I really appreciate your feedback.
GONZO
Site Editor
"Bear Swamp," PA

Posts: 1681
GONZO on Feb 22, 2007February 22nd, 2007, 4:34 am EST
Does mid morning sound right for egg laying time of day?


It can be. Although I should warn you that I often see heavy spotted sedge mating flights during that time (of month and day). These heavy upriver flights of males can be deceptive (and usually aren't associated with the feeding activity). Sometimes they mask the true cause of that feeding, which can be a morning-emerging mayfly like the olive morning duns (Drunella species). It is really hard to know for sure, but this could be another explanation for the refusals you experienced.

PS--Welcome aboard!
Jlh42581
Milesburg, Pa

Posts: 24
Jlh42581 on Apr 10, 2007April 10th, 2007, 10:17 am EDT
I live about 200 yards from where you were... are you sure they werent stone flies? Yes.. it does have grannoms.

Ill go one better here and guess they werent taking caddis they were taking march browns or....Hendricksons. For that matter, they may have been eating craneflies.
Jeremy
GONZO
Site Editor
"Bear Swamp," PA

Posts: 1681
GONZO on Apr 10, 2007April 10th, 2007, 12:21 pm EDT
Hi Jeremy,

I'm sure you know that stretch of the BE far better than I do, but May 20th is almost a month too late for Hendricksons in Central PA. March Browns sometimes hatch sporadically throughout the day, but they are seldom the cause of steady morning activity. And there is some good stonefly activity around then, but the egg-laying activity (the only thing that usually causes steady surface feeding) is mostly nocturnal.

Craneflies are a possibility, but the BE does have some morning Drunella olives (formerly D. cornuta). From the time of month and the time of day, I'd still guess that Hydropsyche (or perhaps Rhyacophila) caddisflies or the Drunella olives were the most likely cause of the feeding that George witnessed. Although, if the weather was really hot on the day(s) before, sulphurs (E. invaria) sometimes hatch around mid-morning in decent numbers as well.
Jlh42581
Milesburg, Pa

Posts: 24
Jlh42581 on Apr 11, 2007April 11th, 2007, 1:42 am EDT
Its hard to tell, especially with spring creek pouring in right there. I remember taking fish on caddis at that time, but this was in the evening. Most midday fishing in that section I spent using sowbugs. Your the bug man, i just figured I throw some possiblities out there. I took a 26" brown in that hole on a size 26 sowbug around that time. He may still be in there, I know I didnt take him home :)
Jeremy
Quillgordon
Schuylkill County, PA.

Posts: 109
Quillgordon on Apr 11, 2007April 11th, 2007, 2:01 am EDT
Jeremy,
If they were caddis, they may have been taking emergers near the surface. Just because the surface is broken by the fish doesn't mean they are taking on top.
As you probably know, if there are multiple hatches going on, its just an 'educated guess'!
John...
Flyfishing is a state of mind! .............. Q.g.

C/R........barbless
GONZO
Site Editor
"Bear Swamp," PA

Posts: 1681
GONZO on Apr 11, 2007April 11th, 2007, 6:19 am EDT
I took a 26" brown in that hole on a size 26 sowbug

Nice feat, Jere! That beats the old 20/20 club by a wide margin!
Quillgordon
Schuylkill County, PA.

Posts: 109
Quillgordon on Apr 11, 2007April 11th, 2007, 1:12 pm EDT

I took a 26" brown in that hole on a size 26 sowbug around that time. He may still be in there, I know I didnt take him home :)
Jeremy
*********************************************************************

Right...... that's because he took your entire tippet and #26 sowburg with him/her! .............. Just Joking!
You must have great eyesight/glasses! Size#26.......


Best wishes...
John
Flyfishing is a state of mind! .............. Q.g.

C/R........barbless
Rlharris
Erie Pa.

Posts: 1
Rlharris on Apr 13, 2007April 13th, 2007, 10:10 am EDT
Another "Grannom" to add to the mix. In Western Pa. we have a major"grannom" hatch about the end of april,the most proliphic hatch in Western Pa! This grannom has been identified as Bracycentris numerosis.It also appears in other streams in the area,not quite as prolific. Hatch lasts 7-10 days,it's worth checking out.
GONZO
Site Editor
"Bear Swamp," PA

Posts: 1681
GONZO on Apr 14, 2007April 14th, 2007, 10:37 am EDT
Rlharris--Hi!

Western and Westcentral PA have some great grannom hatches. Brachycentrus numerosus is the most famous of these, but B. solomoni, B. nigrosoma, and others are also found there. That great PA fly fisher, Chas Wetzel, was probably the first to publicize numerosus. He called it the "Penn's Creek Caddisfly."

PS--You might want to look at the "grannom caddis" thread on the "Fly Hatch Talk..." board for another discussion of these fly-fishing-friendly caddisflies.

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