04/07/09

Insects and other foods the trout may be eating:
1. Blue-winged Olives (Baetis) - sparse hatches
2. Blue Quills - hatching
3. Quill Gordons - hatching but about to end
4. Hendricksons - could start any day now - nymphs are important
5. Little Black Caddis - hatching
6. Little Brown Stoneflies - hatching
7. Midges - hatching in isolated locations
8. Little Short-horned Sedges - should hatch randomly for 2-3 months
9. American March Browns - should start within a couple of weeks
10.. Streamers - matching sculpin, baitfish and small crawfish

Little Brown Stoneflies - Part 2

In the last article about Little Brown Stoneflies, day before yesterday, I just touched
on the Little Browns. It was mostly general information on stoneflies and not much
on the Little Browns. I should have written this a couple of months ago before they
started hatching because the hatches of the various species of these stoneflies will  
be ending within a month. There could be a sparse hatch of certain species after
then but for the most part, the hatches end about the first of May.

When you start seeing a lot of the adults on the banks in the grass and bushes,
most of the hatch has already occurred and maybe all of the hatch. Your only
option then (if it has ended) is to fish the egg laying event. In most cases this will
not occur until near dark. Dark, rainy, cloudy days tend to start the egg laying
earlier.

The female stoneflies will deposit their eggs in the same water they hatched in. It
will be the fast water, either runs or riffles. You may see them dipping down to
calmer areas within the fast water but they will always be near the fast water.
Wherever you see them is where you want to place you fly. If you don't see any
dipping down to the water to deposit their eggs, there is no need to be fishing an
adult pattern of the stonefly.

If you are only seeing a few of the adults on the banks and you think the hatch may
still be occurring, you should fish imitations of the Little Brown Stonefly nymphs late
in the afternoon and up until the park rules say you must stop fishing. The reason
is that is when they are migrating to the large boulders in the water or the banks to
crawl out of the water and hatch. They do not hatch in the water.

You want to cast out into the fast water of the stream and bring the nymph imitation
back all the way back to the bank. If conditions permit you to do so, it is best to stay
well back from the edge of the stream or bank and bring the fly all the way to the
edge of the water. That is where the trout look for the nymphs. If you spook them
along the bank you will be waisting your time. If you must wade (trees along the
edge of he water, then follow this procedure but from out in the water.

The best way to do this is to make an up and across cast and mend the line a
couple of times to help get the fly down on the bottom. You want it weighted as
necessary to do that. Let it swing all the way around to a down stream position and
come completely back to the bank below your position. In this case, you are fishing
in a downstream direction. When you finish a cast, take a step downstream and
make another cast. The idea is to cover all the water along the banks adjacent to
the fast water. By the way, the method I am describing works for all species of all
the families of stoneflies. They all crawl out of the water to hatch.
"Perfect Fly" Little Brown
Stonefly Nymph -Click
Image
"Perfect Fly" Little Brown
Stonefly Adult - Click Image
Fly Fishing DVD's
"Stoneflies DVD shows
video of live stoneflies from
all nine families. It covers
the methods and
techniques used in fishing
the hatches and imitating
the nymphs. The video was
shot on streams from
coast to coast but it has
several scenes taken from
Great Smoky Mountains
National Park.
Click Here
for more information.