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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 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.
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Landscape & scenery photos from the Neversink River

Neversink Gorge (Wolf Brook) in New York
This beautiful, remote stretch of one of the lesser-known large Catskill trout streams produced my only trout in two days of slow fishing, a 9 inch brown. Better than nothing! In fact, even "nothing" in this setting is really something!

From the Neversink River Gorge in New York
You've really got to see this one full-size to enjoy it.  It's my first attempt at a 360 degree panorama stitched together with the latest and greatest version of Adobe Photoshop.

From the Neversink River in New York
Do you ever have so much fun trying to fool a fish that you're almost disappointed when you actually do?  I got that feeling after who knows how many casts over this hungry little brown with a Trico imitation.
The Neversink River Gorge in New York
The Neversink River Gorge in New York
Neversink Gorge (Wolf Brook) in New York
The Neversink River in New York
The Neversink River Gorge in New York
Neversink Gorge (Wolf Brook) in New York
Neversink Gorge (Wolf Brook) in New York

Underwater photos from the Neversink River

Mating toads and their eggs in the shallows.

From the Neversink River Gorge in New York
Mating toads.

From the Neversink River Gorge in New York
Mating toads, with a huge number of eggs stretching out behind them.

From the Neversink River Gorge in New York
Hundreds of tiny toad tadpoles.

From the Neversink River Gorge in New York
Despite the late date in the season, several caddisfly larvae remain on the rocks in this river.

From the Neversink River in New York

On-stream insect photos from the Neversink River

This Ephemerella invaria sulphur dun got stuck in its shuck trying to emerge.  This isn't exactly a "natural" pose for a photograph, but it kind of shows what an emerger pattern could look like.

From the Neversink River in New York
I saw something strange flying around near the streambank, fluttering on and off the water's surface, so I went to check it out.  I didn't recognize the wing profile in flight, and it's no surprise!  These two caddisflies were joined mating, and they were very reluctant to let go.

From the Neversink River in New York
The Neversink River in New York
The underside of a freshly emerged Ephemerella invaria dun.

From the Neversink River in New York
I'm not sure what these clusters of grannoms are doing lying dead and mostly upside down in clusters on the rocks.  Anyone have an explanation?

From the Neversink River in New York

Closeup insects by Troutnut from the Neversink River in New York

References

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