Insects and other foods the trout
should be eating:
1. Slate Drakes
2. Little Yellow Stoneflies (Summer Stones)
3. Needle Stoneflies
4. Mahogany Duns
5. Little Yellow Quills
Most available - Other types of food:
6. Sculpin, Minnows (Streamers)
7. Inch Worms
This Week's Featured Trout Food - Little Yellow Quills #2
I ran an article a couple of weeks ago about the Little Yellow Quills covering the
nymphs and emerging nymphs but goofed up and didn't follow up the following week
with the duns and spinners as I intended to do.
To make certain the this mayfly isn't confused with other species with similar common
names, the Little Yellow Quills are species of the Leucrocuta genus of the
Heptageniidae family of mayflies. The aphrodite, hebe, juno and minerva species are
the most important species in the eastern part of the country.
Since the Yellow Quill duns normally leave the water fairly quickly, fishing our Perfect
Fly dun imitation may not be as effective as fishing our emerger pattern but trout do
eat the duns on the surface. At some locations in the east and depending on the
particular species, these mayflies may hatch later in the year in colder water. That's
when the duns will usually outperform the emergers. The dun will catch trout anytime
there's a hatch but we are providing you information on what should be the most
productive or effective fly.
Most anglers would prefer to fish a dry fly over an emerger, nymph or wet fly because
of the visual, exciting action a dry fly provides. The biot body, split tail imitation of this
dun is very effective because the trout get a good opportunity to closely examine
these mayflies in the shallow, clear water they hatch in.
An upstream presentation in shallow, slower moving water near ripples and runs would
probably be the best approach. Often the water is low in the summer and early fall and
long light leaders are required for this fly to be effective. You should approach the
areas where the Little Yellow Quills are hatching as carefully as possible and make as
good of a presentation as possible under low water conditions. It is very important to
stay hidden from the trout under these tougher conditions.
If the fishing is real tough and you are spooking more trout than you are fishing you
may need to make a down and across presentation. This is not exactly easy in some
of the small freestone streams where the Little Yellow Quills hatch but may be
necessary in order to be successful.
Female Little Yellow Quill spinners deposit their eggs by landing on the water for a
short period of time. They may repeat this process a few times. You can use the dun
pattern to imitate the females prior to their falling spent on the water and dieing. Egg
laying usually occurs over moderate speed ripples. Spinners also tend to congregate
at the head of pools below the faster moving water that feeds the pool and that is
where the spent-spinner patterns are usually most effective.
You should imitate the dying females after they have deposited their eggs and fallen
spent by allowing the Little Yellow Quill Spinner to dead-drift from the ends of the
riffles into the slow water. It is also effective when used at the ends of the pools where
the egg-laying has, or still is taking place. Use a down or down and across
Again, please note that these mayflies hatch in the summer and early fall months when
the water is likely to be low. You must use a careful presentation and stay hidden from
the trout or otherwise you will spook the trout feeding on the spent spinners. This is
easy to do when they are feeding in slow moving, shallow water.
If you dress to match the surroundings, make slow, careful movements and good
presentations, you can still be successful. In many cases the light conditions will be
very low and you may have a difficult time see the Little Yellow Quill spent spinner. In
those cases you need to carefully watch your leader and fly line for the slightest
unnatural movement that indicates a take. Trout normally take the spinner by gently
sipping them in and this usually only causes a slight rise ring that is not readily
noticeable. The rise ring is your only other indication a strike has occurred. This is
fairly technical fishing, but doing so correctly can produce a lot of trout in a short
period of time.
Copyright 2013 James Marsh
New Schedule of Daily
Mondays: Weather and Stream
Conditions Forecast - Coming Week
Tuesdays: Fly Fishing Strategies -
Which Flies To Use - Coming Week
Wednesday: Fishing Tales
Thursday: Smoky Mountains Fishing
Friday: Getting Started
Saturday: Fly Fishing School
Sunday: This Week's Featured Trout
More Options For Selecting Flies:
1. Email us with the dates you will be
fishing the park and we will send
you a list of our fly suggestions.
Please allow up to 24 hours for a
2. Call us at 800-594-4726 and we
will help you decide which flies you
3. Call or email us with a budget for
flies and we will select them and get
them to you in time for your trip.
Shipping is free in the U. S. for all
orders of any size. Orders over $50
are shipped free via Priority Mail.
Please enter your e-mail address in
the box to sign up for a free
subscription to the Perfect Fly "Fishing
Journal". It includes feature articles on
blue-ribbon destinations , fly fishing
techniques, and many other types of
articles of interest to any fly angler. You
can opt out at any time. If you decide
you don't want to receive our
information, just change your status by
clicking at the bottom of an e-mail we
send you in the "Remove" box. We will
not sell or give your e-mail address to
New! If you haven't signed up
previously, please sign up for
our Free Perfect Fly Fishing
Journal. The first issue is out.