Insects and other foods the trout may be eating:
1. Blue-winged Olives
2. Little Black Winter Stoneflies
3. Quill Gordon Mayflies
4. Blue Quill Mayflies
5. Little Brown Stoneflies (some almost black)
6. Little Black Caddis (American Grannoms)
7. Sculpin, baitfish and small crayfish (Imitate with streamers)
Early Season Strategies - Part 6 - Important Tips
I have gone through some scenarios that you are likely to encounter fishing the
streams of the Smokies the next few weeks. It is impossible for me to cover all the
scenarios that could occur, so in order to try to solve some problems many anglers
have with the hatch, I will list some tips and some things that often confuses many
about the various hatches.
Early Season Caddisflies:
There are two species of caddisflies that appear early in the season. One has
already shown up and the other probably has, I just haven't ran into it yet. One is
the Tiny Black Chimarra speceis of caddisflies. They are confused by most anglers
as being Little Black Caddis, or the American Grannoms. They are completely
different, non-related caddisflies.
They are little black (actually a very dark brown that you can only see when you put
them in bright light) that are commonly called Tiny Black Caddis that you will see
crawling up the rocks and on top of the rocks. They emerge near the banks. The
males are a hook size 20 with the females slightly larger. When they hatch, these
crawl out of the water on rocks during the day and deposit their eggs in the
afternoons. The problem is they crawl back down into the water to deposit their
eggs. They hatch when the water is about 45-50 degrees. I have yet to figure out
how to fish imitations of these and unless I am testing something to do with them, I
ignore them. I don't know how you imitate flies crawling up rocks and the banks to
emerge and down the rocks to deposit their eggs. Don't confuse these with the
Little Black Caddis that emerge out in mid stream like the Quill Gordons.
The Little Black Caddis present just as great an opportunity to catch trout as
the Quill Gordon mayflies or Blue Quills. The problem is that most anglers
don't know how to recognize a hatch until it is too late to do them any good.
Little Brown Stoneflies:
When you see them on the banks and in the bushes, don't tie on an imitation until
you see them laying eggs on the water. They live out of the water a long time before
they deposit their eggs.
They do not hatch during the day. They hatch in the evenings. They do move to the
banks before crawling out of the water to hatch and that is why imitations of their
nymphs fished from the fast water to the banks is very effective if done late
in the day or early in the morning. Stay off the banks or you will spook the trout you
are trying to catch.