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Lateral view of a Male Baetis (Baetidae) (Blue-Winged Olive) Mayfly Dun from Mystery Creek #43 in New York
Blue-winged Olives
Baetis

Tiny Baetis mayflies are perhaps the most commonly encountered and imitated by anglers on all American trout streams due to their great abundance, widespread distribution, and trout-friendly emergence habits.

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.
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.

Jmd123
Jmd123's profile picture
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2474
Jmd123 on Jun 30, 2020June 30th, 2020, 12:49 pm EDT
I've tied size 20 flies before, still have most of my box of Mustad 94840's in #20...but this is a new approach for me, guys. Like I said, I've never run into this before to anywhere near the same degree, but those fish in that pond - which was much colder than I realized until I tried wet-wading* - were absolutely going nuts over these tiny little things, although there was a LOT of them once I looked through the binocs...maybe I should make optics standard fishing gear?

Anyway, if any of you Troutnuts fish midges on a regular basis and have a good pattern, dry or wet (e.g., pupae), for me to start with, please share it, pics would be lovely if possible. I've ordered 2 books on midges by Ed Koch (1 with a 2nd author) so those will be perused for patterns and techniques. Gonna have to order some 6x and 7x tippet and maybe some #22's and #24's...

Next kayaking adventure out there I should do a collection, as I now have a really nice B&L zoom stereomicroscope and I can do entomology at home! I'll have to scoop up some plants and algae and see who's hiding in there...

A new challenge awaits! Or at least, I can't stand to see JUMPING FISH and not catch them!!!

Jonathon

*Fear of leeches meant this didn't last long! As you can see from my other post, this pond also proved deeper - at least to SOLID bottom - than it looked. Temperature felt like 65 F at the warmest...LOTS of cold spring flow coming in!
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
Wiflyfisher
Wiflyfisher's profile picture
Wisconsin

Posts: 622
Wiflyfisher on Jun 30, 2020June 30th, 2020, 1:33 pm EDT
Jonathon, as you probably already know midges come in all different sizes and colors. I have never fished midge hatches in a pond, only our West.

For a dry fly I like very small size Griffith's Gnat. It is pretty much a standard midge patterns and it works.

For the emerging pupa I use a thread bod. My patterns are all simple fly patterns and they have worked for me in the past out West. For these really small patterns I prefer to use 2x or 3x short hooks so the hook has more bite, such as TMC #2488 or #2487.

Good luck!
Jmd123
Jmd123's profile picture
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2474
Jmd123 on Jul 1, 2020July 1st, 2020, 12:27 am EDT
Thanks John! Yes, I have seen midges up to size 10! Chironomous plumosus is probably what I was seeing, skimming over a pond full of monster 'gills in Missouri. Wish those were what those pond trout were feeding on! I will take your recommendations and put them in my (now ever growing) "midge files". I was in fact thinking about the Griffith's Gnat.

Jonathon
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
Coha
Coha's profile picture
Cazin, Bosnia

Posts: 2
Coha on Nov 5, 2020November 5th, 2020, 6:53 am EST
Try this pattern. video tutorial by Barry Ord Clarke

Top secret midge

Martinlf
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Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3047
Martinlf on Nov 9, 2020November 9th, 2020, 12:37 pm EST
Zebra midge wet. A killer.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
Martinlf
Martinlf's profile picture
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3047
Martinlf on Nov 10, 2020November 10th, 2020, 4:28 pm EST
I like the looks of Kimball's emerger. Thanks for posting, Ron!
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
Wbranch
Wbranch's profile picture
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2635
Wbranch on Nov 14, 2020November 14th, 2020, 4:18 am EST
I keep them very simple. When trout are midging size is very important. Details like wings don't mean squat. I tie them on #20 - #22 hooks. Anything smaller and I don't care.

White - A few stiff white or cream hackle barbules, white thread body, 2/3 turns of stiff cream hackle. Same for brown and dun. I also tie them with a few barbules of very stiif Hoffman grizzly tails, a gray thread body and 2/3 turns of grizzly hackle.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.

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