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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.

Artistic view of a Perlodidae (Springflies and Yellow Stones) Stonefly Nymph from the Yakima River in Washington
This one seems to lead to Couplet 35 of the Key to Genera of Perlodidae Nymphs and the genus Isoperla, but I'm skeptical that's correct based on the general look. I need to get it under the microscope to review several choices in the key, and it'll probably end up a different Perlodidae.
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.

Roguerat
Roguerat's profile picture
Posts: 456
Roguerat on Mar 10, 2015March 10th, 2015, 4:25 am EDT
I stumbled onto the wire counter-winding by accident; my grandsons were losing their buggers to Bluegill attrition from being torn apart. We tried the wire and no more tattered buggers.

Roguerat
Jmd123
Jmd123's profile picture
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2474
Jmd123 on Mar 10, 2015March 10th, 2015, 5:43 pm EDT
Yep, Rogue, the wire is a big help - if you just tie down the ends of the hackle it can break and become completely unstrung, but that counter-wrapped wire holds it down nicely so that if part of the hackle stem breaks it still keeps the rest of it wired to the body.

I also have suspicions that the POG bugger might not be a bad sculpin imitation. Three years ago my first trout of the year, a beautiful 14" brown (in April no less, not usual for around here) hit that fly, and during a subsequent fishing trip I observed a sculpin about the same size and not too different in color (at least from my perspective). That's the beauty of the Woolly Bugger, it can imitate a whole range of aquatic foods for trout (and panfish & bass). Or, sometimes just be an attractor if you throw some brighter colors in!

Jonathon
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
MiltRPowell
Posts: 106
MiltRPowell on Mar 12, 2015March 12th, 2015, 5:58 pm EDT
Mini Bugger, I guess my ???. Are they the new Hot Bugger. I was nice to a older english man, gifted afew wet flies last year on the creek. He just gifted me some of his mini's. They are nice,
with 12 ta 15 wire wraps, per what I think ya be saying. I like-um. 3 diff- color olive,& so on. bunch of little 14's. Huh, I have used buggers, not on trout, but I can see useing these buggers on trout. Oh!,looks like a copper wire wrap. Huh!!!! He said, try them in those pools I walk back in for. Huh!!!...
So small stream mini buggers?????.
Milt....
flyfishingthecreekM.R.P.
Flyflinger
Fredericksburg, Virginia

Posts: 30
Flyflinger on Mar 13, 2015March 13th, 2015, 2:09 am EDT
I like the way Charlie Craven ties his woolly buggers, http://www.charliesflyboxinc.com/flybox/details.cfm?parentID=41, but counter-wrap the wire over the palmered hackle, being careful not to trap the barbules, and tie off at the head. Often, my #10 and #12 woolly buggers are unweighted for very skinny water. My favorite chenille is Crystal Antron chenille from Cascade Crest Tools. It is the densest chenille I've seen and has just enough flash for attraction.
Oldredbarn
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Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Oldredbarn on Mar 20, 2015March 20th, 2015, 1:56 pm EDT
Rogue, Milt, and Bob. Lets see if we can get a rise out of the nerdy professorial Jonathon. :)

Lets switch the pitch a moment and talk about the Wooly Worm (Pyrrharctia isabella). The larval stage of the Isabella Tiger Moth.

Is it true that they are predictors of the severity of the upcoming winter? Brown stripe wide weather mild/brown stripe thin weather a pain in the ass. I saw somewhere that someone claimed an 80-85% accuracy rate in their predictions.

How come every Wooly Worm I've seen tied looks nothing like the brown and black caterpillar?

I'm thinking of these critters because I have one sitting just outside of my sliding walk-out door downstairs...They claim they produce a natural anti-freeze that keeps them alive during the winter months.

Well, mister JD...What say ye? :)

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
Jmd123
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Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2474
Jmd123 on Mar 20, 2015March 20th, 2015, 3:52 pm EDT
"Lets see if we can get a rise out of the nerdy professorial Jonathon. :)"

OK, Spence, I can at least partially rise to this friendly challenge. While I cannot speak with any authority on the width of the black portion of the body on the Woolly Worms predicting winter (some fellow entomologists told me it was a myth but I'm open-minded), I can say, and perhaps other entomologists on here know, that many insects produce glycerol to keep their hemolymph from freezing, essentially by lowering the freezing temperature. Hence, your anti-freeze, Spence! I do believe certain frogs may do this as well, e.g., the wood frog which ranges all the way up to Jason's backyard in Alaska. Yes, frogs in Alaska!

Back on topic, I have tied, and had success with, Woolly Buggers tied just about every color of the rainbow. On all-hot pink buggers I hooked and lost several nice bass in Texas (ran straight into the damned elephant-ears on the San Marcos River, broke the leader!) and even a brown in the 18-inch+ range struck at one in same color down in one of the trout parks in MO (I think it was Roaring River if I remember correctly - yeah, big old spotted brownie took a swipe at it after turning up his nose at everything else...).

For warmwaters I like chartreuse with a grizzly hackle, black with a grizzly hackle, all black, and a silver and blue variant with sky-blue marabou tail, silver Krystal Flash (10-15 strands) over the tail, silver Crystal Tinsel chenille for the body, and sky-blue hackle over. The last variant is particularly good on crappie in my old hometown lake (which I will hopefully be fly-fishing at Easter!). Silver bead-chain eyes are also a nice touch on this fly.

Jonathon

P.S. Purple, either solid or with grizzly hackle, works nicely on bass. ;oD
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
MiltRPowell
Posts: 106
MiltRPowell on Mar 20, 2015March 20th, 2015, 7:39 pm EDT
Oldredbarn, Your to funny, ya went fishing & didn't even take a rod tube out of the closet. It only took 2 hours & 04 minutes for your buddy Jonathon to come out of the deep ta bite on your posting. Hooked & landed him. To funny.
Jonathen, I think your buddy knows ya to well. I had ta laugh when I read the post. ( cabin fever ) is all over the great northeast as well. I see it has spread
really far now. Did you know there is no shot for it? I asked, ain't none.
Oh! it's cryoprctectant they produce in it's tissues that helps them get threw winter. Yes, Oldredbarn got me to. I looked it up. Was cool reading on the bugger.
But I side with the farmer, I still want my brown eggs, If I side with (entomologists) on this woolly thing. I don't know may bite me, no eggs or something like, worst I may not be apull to fish farmers flats, seeing farm owns it. So it the bugger rules, orange bugger hard winter. Big fuzzy bugger, really cold.!!!
Followed by bad cabin fever.
flyfishingthecreekM.R.P.
Oldredbarn
Oldredbarn's profile picture
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Oldredbarn on Mar 22, 2015March 22nd, 2015, 6:43 am EDT
Followed by bad cabin fever.


Yes! Cabin fever...

If the old brown trout was as predictable as Jonathon, I'd have to give up fishing. :) He used to hang around Merritt up there at MSU for a while, and worked on stream surveys etc...He was an easy catch. :)

I was being a tad serious though. I was wondering why I've never seen a Wooly Worm tied like the real thing? Maybe tannish brown chenielle on either end, and dark in the middle, with short hackle wrapped palmer style...Most have way too long hackle on them...

The weather has broken here. The only snow left is out in the woods. Time to get ready for the upcoming season. Hope there's no holes in the waders!
"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
Jmd123
Jmd123's profile picture
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2474
Jmd123 on Mar 22, 2015March 22nd, 2015, 2:34 pm EDT
Spence, I don't think very many of them ever find their way into the water...now tent caterpillars on the other hand, well I once poked a hole in one of their tents overhanging my favorite stretch of the Maple River in Emmet County. Within a few seconds afterward I heard a very loud SPLASH from under the alders just downstream...imitate THAT!

And the question is not whether I am easy to catch or not, it's what you gonna do with me now?? Better get out your hemostats, I have a pretty sharp set of teeth...so does Leo for that matter!

;oD

Jonathon

P.S. Actually just did a stream entomology/habitat survey last summer in Superior, WI...
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
MiltRPowell
Posts: 106
MiltRPowell on Mar 22, 2015March 22nd, 2015, 3:39 pm EDT
Oldredbarn.....
Spence, Best watch out there.
I don't think that is a boat he's floating in.
Could be on the back of a gator.
( sharp set of teeth):)
Don't go in the water Spence.!!!
Johathen got off the barb-less hook.
He's circling the big pool now.
He's gonna put the bite on ya.
He's gonna get ya now.!!! You & your woolly -buggers.:):):)
flyfishingthecreekM.R.P.
Oldredbarn
Oldredbarn's profile picture
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Oldredbarn on Mar 24, 2015March 24th, 2015, 1:34 pm EDT
Milt. Don't worry. He's using that confounded 3wt no doubt...This big old Dutch/German Brown may be the only thing he's unable to land with that toy rod. :)

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
MiltRPowell
Posts: 106
MiltRPowell on Mar 24, 2015March 24th, 2015, 3:47 pm EDT
Spence, Your something I bet.. your a hard old Dutch/German, I'll bet. Between you & Matt & others I don't think I am gonna go 3wt. I for some reason had a idea, but think not now. Trico hatchs & messing around, but I think now,not,nope, ain't worth it.
Oh! Back on buggers. I met my ol'english man today..
He explains, Woolly Bugger, just a good name for a class of flies. For all the ways they are & can be tied, a man couldn't live long enough to fish them all. American he said, had good idea here.
Then he puts a fly in my hand, what is this, I say wolly. He says no, it's Bruiser. Then another fly, & that was a Bumble, then about 6 more Bumbles some with tails. I thought we had a great talk today on bunch of stuff. But you most likely known all this all along. Ya, great at testing minds, I've seen in your posts. He showed a new old world of stuff,was great to see. Price-less.
flyfishingthecreekM.R.P.
Oldredbarn
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Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Oldredbarn on Mar 26, 2015March 26th, 2015, 8:48 am EDT
http://www.flytierspage.com

Milt...Have yoou visited this site? A lot of Euro tyers etc...I used to subscribe to Trout & Salmon from the UK in the 90's and saw the Bumbles in there.


In 1991 Charles Jardine published his, "The Classic Guide to Fly-Fishing for Trout". Has some great old flies in the back of that book. Great names: Parmachene Belle, Babine Special, Blae & Black, Peter Ross, Cock Robin, Bustard & Orange,Buzzer, Minky, etc...A ton of fun for those of us with too few flies anxeity! :)

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
Roguerat
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Posts: 456
Roguerat on Mar 26, 2015March 26th, 2015, 11:21 am EDT
Spence-

I just bookmarked flytierspage.com, good reference material there...and when I clicked on Hans van Klinken I found my doppelganger! Kinda' like looking in the mirror, eerie.

Water's high and muddy here in W MI, inch+ of rain yesterday and snow still melting- no wading for a while.

Roguerat

'Less is more...'

Ludwig Mies Vande Rohe
MiltRPowell
Posts: 106
MiltRPowell on Mar 26, 2015March 26th, 2015, 6:07 pm EDT
Spence, na I didn't. I'll get on that site on weekend. Sounds good.
I was kicking the tires on a Pflueger #1494, think a 1952! Well re-built her. New classic foot,new metel latch, butterscotch winding knob sweet touch there. Added a counter balance on the spool, new line guard, ah went threw it. new brakes, lube, all, backing, 444 peach 4DT line. Bal to a Hedden #10 Blue Waters, vintage bamboo rod. My new small brook rod. Yes my new 3WT. What ya think,? new back creek & brook rod, put on 7'6" hand tied leader to a Wolly Monster, & a trailer nymph, gonna try my new 3wt soon.Crazy ya say, why yes ain't we all. At least I admit it. And ya gotta get out of my head, 1/2 those flies ya spoke on I fish. Peter Ross #16 in spring, right time, right spot shall pull afew small browns out, native ones. No more secrets....Spence, Spence, Spence.
flyfishingthecreekM.R.P.
Bnorikane
Bnorikane's profile picture
Colorado

Posts: 15
Bnorikane on Mar 29, 2015March 29th, 2015, 3:22 pm EDT
Wonderful photos and story, Paul.

Great fish and cool bugs. I've never seen hellgrammites or dobsons in Colorado. Did you find them in western CO? I spend most of my time east of the divide.
PaulRoberts
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Colorado

Posts: 1776
PaulRoberts on Mar 29, 2015March 29th, 2015, 5:37 pm EDT
Hi Bnoikane, those fish were from NY. However there are plenty of Dobson and Fishflies in CO. They inhabit larger waters mostly -rivers and the lower reaches of streams. The big Dobson is found in rivers entirely and I found a bunch on the Colorado R near Grand Junction. That's smallmouth, chub, and pike-minnow water there. Fishflies are eastern and central so they are E of the divide. Don't know how common they are as I've not fished lower reaches of Front Range waters much -those waters getting siphoned off and heated up pretty quick upon reaching the plains.

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