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Angler's Entomology Podcast

Welcome to the Angler's Entomology Podcast.  On this podcast and blog, I am documenting my re-entry into the world of entomology.   Join us as my wife and I explore the environment in which trout live and the insects and other creatures that live in and share that space.  This is not just a dry recitation of facts, I hope to bring these creatures alive - show you how they live, what makes them fascinating in their own right, and help you understand how they interact with trout in ways that will help your fishing.  So, please join us.  I hope you enjoy the program...


Selene's Blog and Page for Classic Streamers; and you can finder her interview on the podcast the Liar's Club. 


I'm setting up a new set of Quizizz pages to help you learn about different insect groups.  I'll be honest - the best way to learn insects is to look at a lot of insects.  So, give these a whirl and don't get discouraged if you do poorly.   Just try again every so often.   The quizzes will be tiered- so they will get more detailed and complicated as we increase in levels.   The first ones are just about learning the different orders.    

This first quiz is about identifying the four major aquatic insect orders

Quiz #2 is a continuation on Mayfly, Stonefly, Dragon and Damselfly, and Caddisfly Orders. 

This Quiz includes other orders of insects that are important to anglers, but is only the adults.  


Episode 35: Pics and Patterns for Crane Flies

Jul 14, 2019

Hi folks,

Part of the delay in getting this episode out was fishing (I knew you'd understand).   On the positive side, that fishing gave me the opportunity to get some good pictures of crane flies while I was out there.   

This is one of my favorites - mostly because it shows what night collecting with a UV light can be like.   This was on a little brook trout stream up by the Canadian border where we camped a few weeks ago.   The crane fly in the pic was pretty darn big - maybe 2" long.   Note all the critters around the crane fly, tho.  Those are all mayflies and caddisflies that had come to the light.  And yes, the fishing was good. 

Here is another crane fly - taken on another trip this spring.  What I like about this guy is that he is only about 1/2" long - so you can see (well, you can't without scale, but believe me) the variation in size of these critters.   Tie up some smaller guys - they don't all have to be giants.   I also like this picture because you can easily see the halteres - the reduced second pair of wings that are distinctive of order Diptera - the flies: 


In the podcast I mentioned how some crane flies have cool patterns on the legs - which make them very distinctive when they fly.  Obligingly, this guy appeared on another recent fishing trip:

OK, how about some flies.  Here is what I use for the adults.  This is a bit of a fancy version in that I added a parachute hackle to the thorax - often I don't bother.  It is simply a foam body, knotted monofilament legs, and hackle tip wings.   Really not much to it:

The larvae are also pretty simple to tie.  To imitate that swimming motion adding a tail is worthwhile.  This fellow is simply a leather strip tied down with a tail and wrapped to the head.  The strip is the fringe from a cheesy 1960s style vest my ex-wife gave my daughter when she was little.  She didn't dig it, so it ended up in my fly tying pile.   

Lastly, probably my favorite and most useful crane fly imitation is simply a hare's ear body dubbed on a large scud hook.   I mean really - what's not to like about this fly?   Simple, buggy, effective.  Can't beat it:

That's it - now get out there and fish!