04/10/09

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 - hatching
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

American March Browns - Part 3 - Emergers

The only way you can determine that the American March Brown mayflies are
hatching is to actually see some of the duns come off the water or to find them
along the banks in the bushes and trees. As I said previously, they don't hatch at
any one particular time of day. The later in the season they hatch, the earlier in the
day they tend to hatch but they still may hatch anywhere between 10:00 A. M. until
as late as 4:00 P. M. in the afternoon. Six hours a day for two months is a long time
to look for them, so I don't suggest you make a dedicated effort to do so. You
should be aware they may hatch at any time during that period though and be
prepared to fish the hatch if you start seeing them. They are large enough that they
are easy to see and the duns are unique enough that they are easy to identify.

When you do see a dun come off, or on a day when you find the duns on the
banks, trees or bushes, you should try an emerger or dun pattern. I prefer to start
out with an emerger pattern, specifically our "Perfect Fly" emerger. Normally, it is
the best producer during the hatch but it must land in the smooth, slow side of the
current seam, not the fast side. When it gets caught in the seam, I recast the fly. If
that doesn't produce in a short time, I usually change to our emerger with a trailing
shuck. It is about as easy to see on the water as the dun and the trout tend to take
it better than the dun imitation at times.

The emerging duns and the fully emerged duns that are ready to escape the water
get caught in the current seams quickly. They hatch right at the edge of the fast
water and the current catches them quickly. The water is usually warm enough that
the duns wings dry fast and they escape the water rather quickly. They don't drift a
long way on the surface. You want to cast the trailing shuck version to where it start
out drifting down the current seams. I use an upstream or slightly up and across
presentation. I had rather make a lot of short, accurate cast than fewer long, maybe
less accurate cast. That allows you to fish a lot more current seams that you could
making longer cast.
























This is our "Perfect Fly" Emerger. It represents the emerging mayfly dun when the
wings first pop out of the nymph before it sheds it shuck from its abdomen. This fly
is more nymph than dun. It has a partridge tail, goose biot with the ribbed side out,
two CDC wings, dubbed head/throax and dyed partridge for legs.

























This is our "Perfect Fly" Emerger with a Trailing Shuck. It is similar to the Emerger
but it has ribbing on the abdomen made of goose biot and an Antron trailing shuck
and legs. It represents the emerging dun when it is more dun than nymph. Notice it
is darker than the Emerger. These mayflies goes through a significant color change
from the time they first pop out of the nymphal shuck until they are ready to fly
away. I doubt that makes much difference, but why not tie it as close to the real
things as possible. You may be trying to catch an old trout with a PhD in bugs. Ha.

Copyright 2009 James Marsh