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> > Information on BWO patterns

BluelinerJanuary 10th, 2008, 5:22 pm
Posts: 2I am looking for information on BWO patterns and the nymph pattern associated with them.
TaxonJanuary 10th, 2008, 10:56 pm
Site Editor
Royse City, TX

Posts: 1350

BWO is an abbreviation for Blue Winged Olive, which is the common name associated with numerous members of mayfly family Baetidae, and also several members of mayfly family Ephemerellidae genus Drunella.

Are you looking for a list of patterns that are used to imitate those species referred to as BWOs? If so, that would certainly be a huge list. Perhaps you need to be more specific with regard to the information you seek.
Best regards,
Roger Rohrbeck
LeviJanuary 11th, 2008, 9:21 pm
Posts: 6Well for the nymph you can use a pheasant tail, for the emerger you can use an olive soft hackle with blue dun hackle, and for the dry use a blue dun tail an olive body blue dun wings and blue dun hackle. That is just a brief overview if you want some specific questions about patterns just hackle
FlybyknightJanuary 12th, 2008, 2:04 am
Milton, DE

Posts: 82
Which BWO in particular are you interested in?
Baetis tricaudatus
Drunella cortuna
Acentrella turbida
Attenella attenuata
Ephemerella needhami
Sarratella deficiens
Drunella cornutella
Timpanogo simplex

Now I do not want to sound like a wise guy, but
you see size and color are all over the spectrum.
An added complication is that local colors within
the species vary, AND on some species, color changes
as they drift!

Best bet sir is to collect a sample and duplicate
it on the stream.

Lightly on the dimpling eddy fling;
the hypocritic fly's unruffled wing.
Thomas Scott
SofthackleJanuary 17th, 2008, 12:49 pm
Site Editor
Wellsville, NY

Posts: 540
I've used Hans Weilenmann's Partridge and Olive Emerger with great success during the periods when Olives are about. While I really like the idea of tying it with partridge hackle, for smaller sizes, I often substitute with grayish Brahma Hen or Blue Dun Hen. Sometimes Partridge is very difficult to get in smaller sizes. The fly works prior to the hatch and during hatches. Fish it from top to bottom using the Leisenring lift, on the swing, or usptream, just below the surface.

Copy and paste this link into your browser for the recipe and a good close look at the fly.

This one WILL take trout.
"I have the highest respect for the skilled wet-fly fisherman, as he has mastered an art of very great difficulty." Edward R. Hewitt

Flymphs, Soft-hackles and Spiders:
DanoJanuary 17th, 2008, 2:04 pm
Vanderbilt, Michigan

Posts: 101

As Roger pointed out, Blue Wing Olive is the common name of numerous species.

In the waters I fish, there are 3 species of consequence, and I use the same patterns for all three, just in different sizes, all of which I tie according to the reciepes in the Index of Orvis Fly Patterns.

These are "traditional" patterns and I'm reasonably certain that any book on fly tying still in print will have those reciepes. I've been tying those patterns for decades and when an olive hatch is on, they've never let me down...FWIW.


Eventually, all things merge into one...and a river runs through it.
WbranchJanuary 21st, 2008, 7:59 pm
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2733
If you are lucky enough to be able to borrow a copy of "Selective Trout" by Swisher and Richards go to pages 55, 87, and 95 for good descriptions of the life cycles and colors of the naturals and artificials. Also pages 122 - 124 for more data and approximate emergence periods.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
BluelinerJanuary 25th, 2008, 6:37 pm
Posts: 2My apologies for the lack of information. I am new to fly fishing and the concept of internet forums.I purchased a Trout Streams of West Virginia mag from Trout Unlimited. The back pages containes a list of local hatches.From March/21 to Feb./24, the Baetis, common name Little Blue-Winged Olive should be hatching. I am looking for patterns for nymphs and emergers. I like to spend my time on small, out of the way creeks, clear and shalow are the norm.

MartinlfJanuary 25th, 2008, 7:52 pm
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3233
I like the first olive emerger pattern you find on this page; scroll down:

Olive wet flies also work very well, and the dun pattern on the above site is effective too.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
DanoJanuary 26th, 2008, 9:45 am
Vanderbilt, Michigan

Posts: 101

You really don't need to apologize...

I consider wet flies to be emergent patterns so I don't use patterns specifically tied as "emergers" but, I did find a BWO emerger pattern that might be worth a shot at

The recipe is:

Hook: Mustad 94840 (or equivalent) 14-24
Thread: Olive 6/0
Tail (schuck): White CDC
Body: Olive dubbing
Wing: White CDC

I scanned in the Orvis pattern that I use for the nymph (sorry 'bout the poor quality):

Common names can vary a tad, depending on the part of the country. Out here Baetis parvus is refered to as Blue Wing Olive, hatches through out the entire year and is tied on 18-22 hooks. Little Olive, Baetis tricaudatus, hatches from mid-March to mid-May, and is tied on 16-20 hooks. The Tiny BWO out here, isn't even a Baetis, it's a Pseudocloeon edmundsi, "Slate Olive" would be a better common name and is tied on 20-24 hooks. Hope this helps.


Eventually, all things merge into one...and a river runs through it.
TaxonJanuary 26th, 2008, 3:31 pm
Site Editor
Royse City, TX

Posts: 1350

Very informative post. You might be interested to know that Baetis parvus is now classified as Diphetor hageni, and that Pseudocloeon edmundsi is now classified as Heterocloeon anoka. Also, I believe Baetis tricaudatus to be multi-voltine, so it would likely undergo (at least) one subsequent emergence period several months later, although perhaps less noticably.
Best regards,
Roger Rohrbeck
DanoJanuary 26th, 2008, 4:08 pm
Vanderbilt, Michigan

Posts: 101

Thanks for the clarifications...I now suspect that classifications are in a constant state of flux. Seems it wasn't all that long ago since I "updated" my hatch chart...

I do have an updated taxonomy from your site dated 10/15/07 that shows Pseudocloeon edmundsi updated to Plauditus punctiventris. Somehow that didn't make into my last chart update....


Eventually, all things merge into one...and a river runs through it.
TaxonJanuary 27th, 2008, 2:43 am
Site Editor
Royse City, TX

Posts: 1350

Hmmmm. Not able to find a page dated 10/15/2007 on my site. Did you mean 07/15/2007? That would be the taxonomic updates for (the original) Nymphs by Schwiebert. However, it doesn't contain Pseudocloeon edmundsi, only an update from Pseudocloeon anoka to Plauditus punctiventris.

I would sure appreciate your helping me out on this, as I do strive to provide accurate information.
Best regards,
Roger Rohrbeck
DanoJanuary 27th, 2008, 8:07 am
Vanderbilt, Michigan

Posts: 101

Yes, it was (is) the Updated Taxonomy For Selective Trout, the date on the bottom of my print-out is 10/15/07, which is probably the date I printed it. It's on page two (I used standard letter size paper), directly beneath Pseudocloeon anoka.

The last page says "Note: reflects updates as per 08/30/2006 Mayfly Central Master Species List." And...."Created: 10/21/2004 Last modified: 09/01/2006". The address printed out on the very bottom of the pages are

Have you made any updates to it since October last?

Hope this helps.


Edit in: Just got back from your site and P. edmundsi is shown as updated to Plauditus punctiventris. FWIW.

Eventually, all things merge into one...and a river runs through it.
TaxonJanuary 27th, 2008, 10:45 am
Site Editor
Royse City, TX

Posts: 1350

Okay, I see it now. When I made updates to the updated taxonomy pages for the respective books to reflect the Mayfly Central updates of 08/30/2006, I apparently missed the update from Plauditus punctiventris to Heterocloeon anoka.

This was a somewhat more labor intensive process for me prior to having assembled a comprehensive database of the (currently 30,000+) N. American aquatic insect scientific names and synonyms, which was used to proofread scientific names for the recently published Nymphs by Ernest Schwiebert.

Have now corrected the Updated Taxonomy for Selective Trout, and also added a third column for the notes, which I believe will make it read somewhat better.

Now, I'll need to re-validate the updated taxonomy for all of the other books, but that will take a while. In any event, thanks for your help in identifying the discrepancy.
Best regards,
Roger Rohrbeck
DanoJanuary 27th, 2008, 11:17 am
Vanderbilt, Michigan

Posts: 101

You are welcome...It certainly was not my intent to embarass you or to create more work for you and I hope you understand this. Since my "arrival" on this forum, I determined very quickly that you are to be very highly regarded.

I'm certainly not an entomologist by any stretch and what knowledge I do have pertains only to the areas that I fish here in The Basin and the and the 16 or so "significant" hatches that occur. I did spend about 5 years or so putting together a hatch chart for this area that I use mainly for myself and new folks I run into on the streams. I reduced the master down to wallet size that I carry a few extra with me to hand out, when this rare occurance does happen. I also gave a copy to a local shop that I frequent. With the exception of the Salmon Fly, the chart is for May Flys with a few notes regarding Caddis Flys and mention of the Fall Caddis.

Any who, I'll update my chart to reflect the current revisions. I can only begin to imagine the task that lies before you...


Eventually, all things merge into one...and a river runs through it.
MalcolmAugust 20th, 2009, 6:42 am

Posts: 1
The trout will love them

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