Wednesday, October 23, 2013

A tough day at the Doyles: still, no winter stoneflies

Now the sun is shining, but I had real problems with light when I was taking my photos.  I did get some nice shots of this flatheaded mayfly, Maccaffertium vicarium.   In many fly fishing guides, it's still known as Stenonema vicarium, but I'm sure they'll be brought up to date one of these days. To those of us aching to get to the streams in the spring, it's the "American March Brown," one of the earliest hatches we see.  Unfortunately, there are no trout to key on these nymphs this far down the Doyles.


But where are the small and large winter stoneflies (Capniidae and Taeniopterygidae)?  I really looked hard this morning because they should be crawling around in the leaves.  Last year, I found this "small" small winter stonefly on October the 10th in this very river...

and I found this large winter stonefly on 10/27.

I'm not sure if they're delayed for some reason this year, or if I just haven't found the right leafpack!

Lots of Eccoptura common stoneflies this morning, and I managed a few decent photos.

Most Eccoptura nymphs that I see are tan to yellow, like the one in the first photo above: I'm not sure why the abdomen is so brown on the nymph in photo two.  Is it a gender distinction?

Finally, I found the same Perlodids here in the Doyles as I found last week at Buck Mt. Creek -- Clioperla clio and Helopicus subvarians.   But one of the Perlodids I found was simply too small to ID.  Size?  2.5 mm.

Tomorrow, off to a small stream in Sugar Hollow.

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