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

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

Lateral view of a Female Sweltsa borealis (Chloroperlidae) (Boreal Sallfly) Stonefly Adult from Harris Creek in Washington
I was not fishing, but happened to be at an unrelated social event on a hill above this tiny creek (which I never even saw) when this stonefly flew by me. I assume it came from there. Some key characteristics are tricky to follow, but process of elimination ultimately led me to Sweltsa borealis. It is reassuringly similar to this specimen posted by Bob Newell years ago. It is also so strikingly similar to this nymph from the same river system that I'm comfortable identifying that nymph from this adult. I was especially pleased with the closeup photo of four mites parasitizing this one.
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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This topic is about the Caddisfly Species Nectopsyche albida

This is the most prominent species of Nectopsyche in most northern states nationwide, and it earned the common name "White Miller" for the genus.

Because Nectopsyche albida is nocturnal, is a favorite of late-season night fishermen.
Posts: 2
MIKE54 on May 3, 2013May 3rd, 2013, 3:22 pm EDT
Where did the name "White Miller" come from, for the caddis bug in the warm Yellowstone waters? I am not interested in the east coast mayfly with the same name. Thanks, Mike Miller.
Posts: 560
Sayfu on May 3, 2013May 3rd, 2013, 4:12 pm EDT

Hordes of them come off on my Main Snake, but not on either the North, or South Fork of the Snake. A good sized caddis, (#12-14) with bright green bodies. Timing I believe is in Sept-Oct.
Entoman's profile picture
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
Entoman on May 4, 2013May 4th, 2013, 12:51 pm EDT
Hi Mike,

Welcome to the forum!

White Miller as a common name was originally applied to a wet fly, not an insect. It goes back very far. It had been in existence for some time by the 1890's when the fly by that name was suggested by Mary Orvis Marbury as good to use "when the white moths were about." People call things lots of names and it has been applied to the mayfly genus Ephoron by a few, but it has mostly been used by eastern anglers for the caddis genus Nectopsyche at least as far back as the early 20th century. The most common species is transcontinental and there are others as well. The name was applied to western populations only recently, after anglers became aware of them and they were confirmed to be the same critters as their eastern counterparts.
"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
Adirman's profile picture
Monticello, NY

Posts: 479
Adirman on May 4, 2013May 4th, 2013, 1:25 pm EDT
I remember reading about that pattern in Bergmans Trout. As I recall, he held high regard for that fly, especially for fishing for Browns. Not sure what species of mayfly it was supposed to represent and maybe it was more of an attractor pattern, but he swore by it,especially when fishing up in the catskills , as one of his real go-to patterns.

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