Saturday, July 19, 2014

So many colorful insects: waiting for the annual trip to Montana

I've had trouble this summer getting myself to go to the streams.  I don't like the hot humid weather, wading in water that's choked with vegetation, soaked with sweat while I wait for the condensation to dry on my lens.  All of this when I rather doubt that I'm going to see something new, that I'll be taking of photos of insects of which I all ready have some pretty good pictures.

So I find myself looking forward to that annual fishing trip to Montana.  Time to check my leaders and tippet spools, make sure my fly boxes are full -- need lots of "North Fork Specials"!    And I'll soon by oiling my reels and cleaning my lines.  It's all part of the fun.  But so too is the anticipation of seeing those beautiful larvae and nymphs that we don't find in the East and their beautiful patterns and colors.    For example...

I. Mayflies

1. That beautiful spiny crawler in the photo at the top of the page -- Drunella doddsi.  That's about as colorful as they get -- it's a very small nymph.

2. And the most common insect I see in the small, cold water streams, another spiny crawler, Drunella coloradensis, which comes in all sorts of colors.

3. And there's the weird spiny crawler, Timpanoga hecuba.

4. A flatheaded mayfly that we don't see in the East, Epeorus deceptivus.

5. And another, Nixe simplicioides.

6. Another strange looking mayfly, the pronggilled mayfly with "tusks" -- Paraleptophlebia bicornuta.

7.  And one that we do have here in the East, the little stout crawler, genus Tricorythodes (not sure, however, that this is a species we find.)

II. Caddisflies

1. A free-living caddisfly larva that I've seen only once (last summer), Rhyacophila Brunnea-Vemna group.

2. And the fairly common, common netspinner in the streams that I visit,  Arctopsyche grandis.

III. Stoneflies

And in Montana, there are still some nice stoneflies around at this time of the year.  E.g.

1. The very colorful, Claassenia sabulosa.

2. And, of course, there are still some "Salmon Flies" hanging around, Pteronarcys californica.


So much to look forward to.  Does it have to be five weeks away?!  Below, the Blackfoot and the Bitterroot Rivers.

1 comment:

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