Insects and other foods the trout may be eating:
1. Blue-winged Olives
2 . Sculpin, baitfish and small crayfish (Imitate with streamers)
3. Little Brown Stoneflies
4. Quill Gordons
5. Blue Quills
6. Little Black Caddis
7. Hendricksons and the Red Quills
8. Little Short-horned Sedges
9. American March Browns
Little Short-horned Sedges - Adults
The adult Short-horned Sedges provides anglers an opportunity to catch trout but
fishing the egg laying activity is somewhat different from many other caddisflies. The
females dive and paste their eggs on the bottom of the stream. They return to the
surface to fly away or die on the surface. You will see this occurring in the riffles and
The egg laying activity usually occurs late in the afternoon but much earlier if the
sky is overcast. The later in the year it is, the later in the day they tend to
deposit their eggs. There are usually enough of these that you can easily spot
the small caddisflies swirling around a few inches above the water and hitting the
surface. That's where you want to place your fly.
You can add some weight to your leader above the fly and imitate the divers but we
seem to do better with the dry fly. The adults land on the water before diving and
return to the surface after they deposit their eggs. Our Perfect Fly imitation has a
foam body that floats well in the riffles and runs.
You may see the flash of a trout but for the most part, you will not see the trout
eating the diving caddisflies. Don't overlook the egg laying activity of this hatch.
You can catch several trout in a short time if conditions are right.
This is our "Perfect Fly" imitation of the Short-horned Sedge Adult
The American March Brown
Above Image is of the American March Brown Dun
The March Browns will soon start hatching in the Smokies. They probably already
are in the very low elevations. The recent warmer weather will help speed up the
hatch some. The problem with these large mayflies is that they tend to hatch over a
very long period of time, as long as two months. It is difficult to find them hatching on
any consistent basis.
For many years some American March Browns were called Gray Fox. For years
entomologist list a Stenonema fuscum species. During that same time period the
scientific name for the American March Brown was the Stenonema vicarium. The
fuscum, or Gray Fox, was thought to be a different species. More studies proved the
fuscum was the same species as the vicarium. For other reasons with nothing to do
with any of this, more recently, the Stenonema vicarium was reclassified. It is now
the Maccaffertium vicarium. The thing you need to remember is that what many
anglers still call the Gray Fox is the American March Brown.
There can be other confusion regarding the March Brown. The name "American"
added to the name March Brown because there are two March Brown mayflies - a
Western March Brown and the American March Brown. They are not similar. They
are not even in the same genus. This can be a factor when you are purchasing flies
to imitate them. You may purchase Western March Brown imitations for American
March Brown mayflies if you're not careful.
We will get into imitating these large mayflies beginning tomorrow.
2011 James Marsh