Some anglers consider caddisflies to be even more important than mayflies, and on many rivers they're right. Angler-entomologists focus less energy on them because they are slightly less prone to cause a feeding frenzy among the trout. While that does happen, they are more commonly an intermittent food source during the times when it seems like nothing's hatching. Understanding their life cycle is of paramount importance to any fly fisher, but learning their quirks species-by-species is less useful than with mayflies.
This common name refers to only one order.
These are pretty much always called Caddisflies.
Some say caddisflies are even more important than mayflies, and they are probably right. The angling world has taken a while to come to terms with this blasphemy. Caddis imitations are close to receiving their fare share of time on the end of the tippet, but too many anglers still assume all caddisflies are pretty much the same.
Caddis species actually provide as much incentive to learn their specifics as the mayflies do. There is just as much variety in their emergence and egg-laying behaviors, and as many patterns and techniques are needed to match them. Anglers are hampered only by the relative lack of information about caddisfly behavior and identification.
Brachycentrus (Grannoms) Caddisfly Pupa
View 10 PicturesThe green blob contained in this case is a pupa in the early stages of transformation from larva to the final stage we generally picture and imitate. This specimen and several like it were fixed to a rock I picked up, and each one had the front of its case sealed off, protecting the helpless pupa from predation. It's neat to see the insect part-way through such a radical transformation.
It was very hard to extract this thing from its case, so there's a bit of extra goo near the head from where I accidentally punctured it.
Collected April 14, 2007
from in Added to Troutnut.com by on April 22, 2007
Hydropsyche aenigma (Spotted Sedge) Caddisfly Adult
View 18 PicturesThese big caddisflies were tempting trout as they wriggled out of their shucks (Shuck: The shed exoskeleton left over when an insect molts into its next stage or instar. Most often it describes the last nymphal or pupal skin exited during emergence into a winged adult.), while others skated across the water at a medium pace, probably egg-laying.
Collected May 15, 2007
from in Added to Troutnut.com by on May 18, 2007