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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 Ephemerella mucronata (Ephemerellidae) Mayfly Nymph from the Yakima River in Washington
This is an interesting one. Following the keys in Merritt R.W., Cummins, K.W., and Berg, M.B. (2019) and Jacobus et al. (2014), it keys clearly to Ephemerella. Jacobus et al provide a key to species, but some of the characteristics are tricky to interpret without illustrations. If I didn't make any mistakes, this one keys to Ephemerella mucronata, which has not previously been reported any closer to here than Montana and Alberta. The main character seems to fit well: "Abdominal terga with prominent, paired, subparallel, spiculate ridges." Several illustrations or descriptions of this holarctic species from the US and Europe seem to match, including the body length, tarsal claws and denticles, labial palp, and gill shapes. These sources include including Richard Allen's original description of this species in North America under the now-defunct name E. moffatae in Allen RK (1977) and the figures in this description of the species in Italy.
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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Shanti has attached this picture to aid in identification. The message is below.
Shanti
Sweden

Posts: 95
Shanti on Jun 21, 2012June 21st, 2012, 1:17 pm EDT
It came floating downstream with it's wings paddling.
Trout showed no interest, they ate caddis instead.

Appeared to be a knocked-down-dun, because after it had dried the wings whilst sleeping in my hands I sat him on the brim of my hat. It made some sound and then flew off.
Somewhere, right now, a fish is rising.
And you´re at the computer..
Martinlf
Martinlf's profile picture
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3047
Martinlf on Jun 21, 2012June 21st, 2012, 3:07 pm EDT
Cool. Your find looks like a bluebird or swallow. A few years ago I found a titmouse (one of my favorite birds) tangled in line right at the water's edge, about to immerse itself with its struggles. The darn thing bit me several times as I carefully worked the monofilament out of its wings. Those beaks crack sunflower seeds, and I was not surprised at the pinch they gave me, but it was a pleasure to see my feathered friend fly off, scolding me the whole time with its characteristic wheezing note.

How's the fishing?
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
Shanti
Sweden

Posts: 95
Shanti on Jun 21, 2012June 21st, 2012, 3:41 pm EDT
Old lines on the banks kills. I don't understand why people can't bring their garbage back home.
Like beer-cans, I mean, there is less weight in them on the way home.

Picture above is from last year.
This little fellow ended up in the water somehow, I sat with it in my hands for an hour or so and he actually fell asleep. Friendlier than your was..
I'll see if he remembers me in september.
Somewhere, right now, a fish is rising.
And you´re at the computer..
Oldredbarn
Oldredbarn's profile picture
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Oldredbarn on Jun 21, 2012June 21st, 2012, 7:40 pm EDT
Joakim, Louis,

Looks like it may be a Tree Swallow (Tachycineta bicolor). This bird's back in the right light is a radiant blue...It is hard to tell from the view but it kind of appears like there may be some orange on the underside...If this is the case maybe a Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica)...The Tree Swallow is light colored underneath.

The real story may be how this poor fella found himself in the river. These guys fly so fast and change direction on a dime...Maybe a couple ran in to each other and he fell in...The sleeping part was probably due to being wore out trying to not drown.

A couple weeks ago I had a young Downy Woodpecker eating from my hand...My wife took a picture. There is a local nature center and some of the birds are getting a tad too tame. The Chick-a-Dees have dined in my hand and I almost got a White-breasted Nuthatch to land in my hand as well...He just couldn't do it...I've even seen Sandhill Cranes eating from folks hands there as well...

Joakim...You getting excited about your upcoming visit? I'm trying to plan another visit...I'm on a waiting list to go with a group of guys from the Michigan Fly Fishing club, but I'm 3rd or 4th on the standby list...I'm just going to have to just go! The last two times I went I booked something that required a deposit...This forced me to believe I was actually going and I tied the flies and planned the trip.

Take Care!

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
Martinlf
Martinlf's profile picture
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3047
Martinlf on Jun 21, 2012June 21st, 2012, 8:05 pm EDT
Yes, the orange had me thinking barn swallow; the wings are probably too long for a bluebird. Tree swallows, as you indicate, Spence, have whitish bellies. I had them and bluebirds living in my yard in our former domicile. Both a joy to watch.

Chickadees eating from your hand--cool. Though as you hint, not all humans are worthy of such trust, it is wonderful when our fellow creatures let us get so close.

Yesterday at school I had a very young chipmunk first let me walk almost right up to him (I didn't notice until I was within a few feet; he was on a side wall to the steps I was about to mount). Then he ran from me, stopped, turned around and ran back almost to me. Just when I thought he would scamper onto my shoe, he thought better of the whole endeavor and skidaddled away. Very cute. It made me wonder if someone in the Registrar's Office had been feeding him peanuts.

As for old fishing line, I bring it home all the time, and when the pile gets big enough, burn it. Dangerous stuff for critters, and some fishermen leave yards and yards of it out there.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
Jmd123
Jmd123's profile picture
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2474
Jmd123 on Jun 21, 2012June 21st, 2012, 8:09 pm EDT
I once rescued a bat that was floating down the Maple River at night back in my UMBS days. I let him climb on the handle of my rod, then got him safely to the bank. I could only imagine the size of the brown trout that would have gotten him, but he was out there, somewhere...Poor little guy was trying to paddle with its wingtips!

OK, so who's going to tie a BATFLY now? Nana nana nana nana nana nana nana nana...BATFLY!!!! (Sorry, couldn't resist)

Jonathon
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
Shanti
Sweden

Posts: 95
Shanti on Jun 22, 2012June 22nd, 2012, 12:14 am EDT


Joakim...You getting excited about your upcoming visit? I'm trying to plan another visit...I'm on a waiting list to go with a group of guys from the Michigan Fly Fishing club, but I'm 3rd or 4th on the standby list...I'm just going to have to just go! The last two times I went I booked something that required a deposit...This forced me to believe I was actually going and I tied the flies and planned the trip.

Take Care!

Spence


Yes I am.
The planning is done, the schedule says Fishing.
All you have to do is show up and I'll include you!
Some back-country stuff, some Henrys Fork, some float-trippin', dry fly-flippin' trout back-slippin'.
Somewhere, right now, a fish is rising.
And you´re at the computer..
PaulRoberts
PaulRoberts's profile picture
Colorado

Posts: 1776
PaulRoberts on Jun 22, 2012June 22nd, 2012, 7:34 am EDT
It's a fledgling barn swallow.

A while back I was fishing a stream in NY and a fledgling catbird hit the pool I was fishing. I was busy trying to get a cast to a nice brown at the time and had to spook the trout to save the bird, which then vanished before I could get to it. :(

Hey Shanti, enjoy that trip. You're livin' brother! Spence, you should GO!
Oldredbarn
Oldredbarn's profile picture
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Oldredbarn on Jun 22, 2012June 22nd, 2012, 10:36 am EDT
I once rescued a bat that was floating down the Maple River at night back in my UMBS days. I let him climb on the handle of my rod, then got him safely to the bank. I could only imagine the size of the brown trout that would have gotten him, but he was out there, somewhere...Poor little guy was trying to paddle with its wingtips!

OK, so who's going to tie a BATFLY now? Nana nana nana nana nana nana nana nana...BATFLY!!!! (Sorry, couldn't resist)

Jonathon




http://www.troutnut.com/topic/1736/batflies

Up in Grayling there is a fly known as the "Bat Fly" and they are about over the last week or so up on the Au Sable...See TroutNut link...

"And there's all the other stuff to do. There was the spinner fall of batflies during that one warm morning." This is a quote from this weeks Fishing Report from Gates'Au Sable Lodge web page...There is also a picture there of a friend of mine from my winter fly tying group holding a nice brown...I'm beginning to think this group is full of Master Angler's...:) My fish showed up there at the end of May.

:) Spence

http://www.gateslodge.com/fishingreport.php
"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
Willy
Willy's profile picture
Chicago, IL

Posts: 47
Willy on Jun 23, 2012June 23rd, 2012, 8:00 am EDT
I was witness to the morning spinner fall of batflies. Fish weren't eating them, but they were eating the few hex that were still around. :)
Check out my fishing pictures on Instagram.
Oldredbarn
Oldredbarn's profile picture
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Oldredbarn on Jun 23, 2012June 23rd, 2012, 6:40 pm EDT
I was witness to the morning spinner fall of batflies. Fish weren't eating them, but they were eating the few hex that were still around. :)


Willy...Things could be worse...:)

How's it going up there? We going to get a fishing report? Maybe some pics? How's my river doing? :) Is it treating you guys well?

I don't think I'm going to make it up until the middle of July.

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
WestCO
WestCO's profile picture
Palisade, CO

Posts: 65
WestCO on Aug 16, 2012August 16th, 2012, 9:12 pm EDT
That's a cool story! One thing that we're really lacking here in Colorado are cool song birds. But they've just reintroduced Osprey into a few of our national forests so I have to say that the one thing I'm really looking forward to is being out on the river when a big bird swoops down and takes my target. The closest thing I've had to that was when a vulching cormorant salvaged a brown that I failed to revive. Apparently he was just waiting for me to cripple a fish or something of the sort, I worked for a while to revive a fish that I had to play for way too long on a hot day, he just never made it back and the cormorant took him home. I felt bad about the fish, but seeing that pterodactyl make quick work of the fish was pretty cool. I also had to go home and check out what that thing was because we don't normally get cormorants out here.
...but fishermen I have noticed, they don't care if I'm rich or poor, wearing robes or waders, all they care about is the fish, the river, and the game we play. For fishermen, the only virtues are patience, tolerance, and humility. I like this.
Sayfu
Posts: 560
Sayfu on Aug 17, 2012August 17th, 2012, 6:00 am EDT

I think of those little fellers tangled up in discarded mono, or a can top, waste of any tangling kind. That's the only time I have to identify a bug is when I'm bent over picking up garbage.

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