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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 Glossosoma (Glossosomatidae) (Little Brown Short-horned Sedge) Caddisfly Larva from the Yakima River in Washington
I caught this tiny larva without a case, but it seems to key pretty clearly to to Glossosomatidae. From there, the lack of sclerites on the mesonotum points to either Glossosoma or Anagapetus. Although it's difficult to see in a 2D image from the microscope, it's pretty clear in the live 3D view that the pronotum is only excised about 1/3 of its length to accommodate the forecoxa, not 2/3, which points to Glossosoma at Couplet 5 of the Key to Genera of Glossosomatidae Larvae.
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.

Adirman's profile picture
Monticello, NY

Posts: 479
Adirman on Aug 6, 2018August 6th, 2018, 12:05 am EDT
Hey guys,

For the past month , been only fishing warm water stuff so definitely wanted to do some trout fishing this weekend. However, With the rain and high water levels on all major Catskill rivers and creeks , thought it be my best option to head for the tribs and try to get some brookies. Water was cold, clear and fresh today and although the brookies were small, they were willing willing And eager to take my # 14 Royal Wulff . Lots of fun and glad to see that a spot I hadn’t fished in many years still held my favorite kind of trout !! I was trying to get a pic of the biggest of the day(only a 7 incher) but he jumped outta my hands and clocked his head on a rock during the fall so l left him alone after 😁

AFB1949F-9485-4A2A-B3ED-5B22A6E1FC94.jpeg (127.85 KiB) Viewed 37 times
Iasgair's profile picture

Posts: 148
Iasgair on Aug 8, 2018August 8th, 2018, 10:48 am EDT
It's great to revisit a spot you haven't been to in a long time and see it's still productive as back when.

Brookies never get boring, and in my opinion during spawning time, probably the prettiest fish on this planet. I personally like the orange fins and the purple dots.

Good for you Adirman. Glad you had a great day on the tribs.
Adirman's profile picture
Monticello, NY

Posts: 479
Adirman on Aug 8, 2018August 8th, 2018, 11:16 pm EDT
Yes, they absolutely are!!

Thank you my friend 😊
Jmd123's profile picture
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2474
Jmd123 on Aug 9, 2018August 9th, 2018, 8:52 am EDT
"Brookies never get boring, and in my opinion during spawning time, probably the prettiest fish on this planet. I personally like the orange fins and the purple dots."

I'll second that motion, gentlemen!! I have two brookie spots and anytime I can pop one over 9" is a thrill. They bend the 3-weight over good! And you'll only find them in the purest, cleanest, coldest waters.

I took my Field Biology class to one of my favorite spots this summer, the Pine River at Rearing Pond Road. Forget catching fish in a 20-foot seine in that stream! Two much current, too many obstructions, and this time too few fish herders! Nevertheless, I managed to catch two little sculpins in my D-net while collecting benthics. And man, what benthics!! Samples from a nice gravel riffle were squirming with critters, loads of blackfly larvae and caddisflies and mayfly nymphs and others, very rich and very dense. And cold - one of my students really had a hard time getting in!

I give a lecture on stream ecology in this class and then take them on two stream collecting trips, the first of which is the Whirlpool access on the Au Sable. This allows us to compare the warmwater lower Au Sable to a designated trout stream heavily populated with brookies and rainbows. I tell my students how this fits into the River Continuum Concept (look it up if you're not familiar with it - pretty interesting!) as a headwater stream, cold, shaded, few plants or algae but lots of debris input (leaves, twigs, wood, etc.) and dominated by shredders and collectors (benthic functional feeding groups), with strictly coldwater fishes such as trout and sculpins. The lower Au Sable is more of a midreach stream - warmer, more open, lots more algae and plants, more scrapers (scrape algae off surfaces) in the benthics, and warmer water fishes such as minnows, smallmouth bass, etc.

Another system of evaluation I teach them about is the Qualitative Habitat Evaluation Index (QHEI), from the Ohio EPA, for stream quality evaluation. It's a series of numerical scores on such aspects as instream habitat, pool/riffle structure, sinuosity, substrate type, riparian land use, etc. The maximum possible score is 100. Well, I tell my students that the Pine would probably be in the 75-80 or above range, same with the lower Au Sable.
An urban stream? Like 25 or below...

So yes, David, hit those tribs and catch those brookies! And think of the quality waters that you're fishing to catch those little gemstones too!

Tight lines with speckled fish on them!


P.S. Gave 4 (FOUR!) final exams today, two with live plants...it's all over now but the grading.
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...

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