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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 Setvena wahkeena (Perlodidae) (Wahkeena Springfly) Stonefly Nymph from Mystery Creek #199 in Washington
As far as I can tell, this species has only previously been reported from one site in Oregon along the Columbia gorge. However, the key characteristics are fairly unmistakable in all except for one minor detail:
— 4 small yellow spots on frons visible in photos
— Narrow occipital spinule row curves forward (but doesn’t quite meet on stem of ecdysial suture, as it's supposed to in this species)
— Short spinules on anterior margin of front legs
— Short rposterior row of blunt spinules on abdominal tergae, rather than elongated spinules dorsally
I caught several of these mature nymphs in the fishless, tiny headwaters of a creek high in the Wenatchee Mountains.
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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Roguerat's profile picture
Posts: 456
Roguerat on Apr 20, 2013April 20th, 2013, 4:24 am EDT
we've experienced record rain-falls and subsequent flooding of W Michigan rivers the past 2 weeks, as of today I don't plan on getting in a river for the next 2 weeks as well.
does anyone have experience or information for extreme flood-effects on trout? do they just try to hold and survive, get washed downstream, ??

my home stream, the Rogue, is flowing more than 3x it's normal CFS for this time of year, and the Muskegon is way up there too.

The Roguerat

I Peter 5:7 'Cast your cares upon Him..'
The3Ps's profile picture
Norway, Maine

Posts: 3
The3Ps on Apr 20, 2013April 20th, 2013, 5:02 am EDT
Quite sure they will hunker down and stay put in a deep hole with less current. Some will wash down but will come back just as soon as water levels go down. Not to worry,flood waters are normal and been going on from the beginning of time.
Patience, persistence, presentation!
Posts: 560
Sayfu on Apr 20, 2013April 20th, 2013, 5:41 am EDT
Here is one that I bantered around, and has been speculated on for sometime now. I discussed it with Bob Jacklin. Why have we had a poor terynarcys californica emergence for a handful of years now? It appears the riparian zone destruction caused by rising waters can have an effect. Authorities out here don't want to attribute it to the extreme raising of the water levels in order to negatively effect rainbow spawning, and protect the cutthroat that spawn about a month later. The water can be say 10,000 cfs, and they bump it up to 23,000 cfs right around the time the big bugs are starting their nymph migration towards the banks. That doesn't effect rivers in Bob's Yellowstone area, but he did mention riparian destruction that are readily evidenced in some of their stretches of river on the Madison.
PaulRoberts's profile picture

Posts: 1776
PaulRoberts on Apr 23, 2013April 23rd, 2013, 9:20 am EDT
MontanaMike's profile picture
Posts: 4
MontanaMike on Apr 29, 2013April 29th, 2013, 12:27 pm EDT
The Gallatin and Yellowstone blow out every year and the trout populations stay normal. Its incedible how they can hold to rocks in such turbid currents. I wouldnt worry too much unless it displaces fish in places they could get trapped. However, trout seek out the right temperatures and have a good feel on where they are. With irrigation canals here always rising and drying up, the trout tend to just go with the flow.
Jesse's profile picture
Posts: 378
Jesse on Apr 29, 2013April 29th, 2013, 6:17 pm EDT
Okay flooding, especially in an extreme fashion such as yours, is both good and bad. It is bad because depending on the spawning fish (im going to go with brown trout), their eggs/babies most likely won't be able to survive that type of water environment. The muddy, high pressuring flows aren't good for young trout. As for larger trout, i have found that it could be a good thing for many reasons. One being that it takes away fishing pressure. Two being that a lot of food is activated such as other smaller fish. Three being that it allows fish to move to areas they normally wouldn't - such as small tributary streams. After flooding you could find fish in very unlikely places, which will most likely keep them stranded until the next high water, movable opportunity. With all this good, however, the bad side (other than effects on young trout), is that flooding is no longer a natural process. Sure rivers come up as they always have, but now instead of natural riparian areas surrounding a stream as they once did, humans have ruined that. Whatever we may be doing upstream will get washed down. Flooding now means chemicals possibly being in the river, along with numerous other negative potentials. So... There is good and bad. Hope that helps.
Most of us fish our whole lives..not knowing its not the fish that we are after.

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