Fly Fishing for Trout Home
User Password
or register.
Scientific name search:

> > Fallceon species mating

MillcreekNovember 25th, 2015, 12:21 pm
Healdsburg, CA

Posts: 356
Over the last week the Fallceon species have been emerging and mating. It usually begins by late morning or early afternoon when the males take up position over the water and a certain distance inland. They bob up and down over water and inland from a few inches to well over 10 ft above the water or land. They appear to all be imagos.

The females show up after the males and appear to be all subimagos. It would appear they are mated while they are still subimagos. They come off the water and are immediately mobbed by the males with one male appearing to mate with the female while other males swarm around it. The females appear as imagos later in the day after the males have disappeared for the day. The female imagos appear to lay eggs.

My question is: Do many male mayflies mate with subimagos? Has anybody else seen this happening?
MartinlfNovember 25th, 2015, 11:08 pm
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3211
I believe I've seen it with eastern green drakes. Not with a lot of bugs, but a select few. I asked Gonzo about this and he said that when the hormones begin to flow, bugs sometimes exhibit the same kind of behavior drunk frat boys do. And drunk non-frat boys. I believe in humans this kind of indiscriminate urge to mate under the influence is sometimes called beer goggles. I don't know how long the sperm remains viable in bugs. It can last a while in humans; I wonder if any of the bug guys know whether or not subimagos can be fertilized.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
PaulRobertsNovember 30th, 2015, 10:54 am

Posts: 1776
Good question. I've ever seen that.
MillcreekNovember 30th, 2015, 11:53 am
Healdsburg, CA

Posts: 356

What is either the scientific or more specific name for the eastern green drakes? I tried googling it and came up with several hits.

The Fallceon quilleri I've seen seem to engage in this behavior most of the time. I've never seen a female imago being mated. I'm not saying it never happens but if it does it happens at a time when I don't see it.


I haven't seen it in any other species so far, but I'll be watching a little more closely now. There is a paper which gives some indication that fertilization can occur in subimagos.

The paper is "The Mayfly Subimago" by George Edmunds, Jr. and W.P. McCafferty(1988). It can be seen here:

PaulRobertsDecember 1st, 2015, 11:22 am

Posts: 1776
Thanks, Mark.
MillcreekDecember 1st, 2015, 11:54 am
Healdsburg, CA

Posts: 356
I've also run across an article that states that the mayfly, Dolania americana only mates when the female is a subimago, in fact the females remain subimagos for the rest of their lives.

The article is here:

It also occurs in Ephoron sp. Article is here:
MartinlfDecember 1st, 2015, 3:07 pm
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3211
Here's the Eastern Green Drake, Mark. What a bug! The spinners look like bombers overhead, and their weaving and dipping flight is stunning to behold. For years I believed those who said that fishing during the hatch is pointless--too many fishermen, too many bugs, picky fish that wouldn't eat them anyway, etc. Yes, it is a party for all involved, even a zoo, but now I wouldn't miss it for anything. I've met some great guys sitting on the bank waiting for the spinner fall, and if you catch the nymphing right the results can be phenomenal. Also look to the right on the banner page of Troutnut for a drake.

P.S. Your link above on Dolania is no longer working, but the other articles are interesting. As I noted above, when I saw this with Green Drakes, I wondered. Nature is certainly full of mysteries and surprises.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
MillcreekDecember 1st, 2015, 5:05 pm
Healdsburg, CA

Posts: 356
Thank you, Louis.

P.S. Your link above on Dolania is no longer working, but the other articles are interesting. As I noted above, when I saw this with Green Drakes, I wondered. Nature is certainly full of mysteries and surprises.

The link on Dolania works on my computer. Don't know why it doesn't on yours. Thanks for the reply on the Green Drakes. Nature is certainly full of mysteries and surprises, I get kicked in the ass every time I get complacent.

Quick Reply

You have to be logged in to post on the forum. It's this easy:
Username:          Email:

Password:    Confirm Password:

I am at least 13 years old and agree to the rules.

Related Discussions

TitleRepliesLast Reply
Re: Skwala question
In Skwala Stonefly Nymph by Gillybilly
6Feb 20, 2020
by Leskorcala
Re: This Bug Has Heard All Your Jokes About Its Head Already
In General Discussion by BoulderWork
3Dec 10, 2015
by PaulRoberts
Re: Thunder Creek flies
In Fly Tying by Dbinmt
13Jun 12, 2020
by Tomlove007
Re: Flightless Mayfly??
In the Mayfly Genus Serratella by ZenCane
8Apr 5, 2010
by Gutcutter
Re: Why mayflies dance
In General Discussion by Troutnut
5Dec 5, 2007
by Martinlf
Re: Wow
In Female Baetisca laurentina Mayfly Dun by Taxon
1Jun 26, 2006
by Troutnut
Eastern Green drake
In the Photography Board by Clmingo
Re: getting' golden
In Fishing Reports by Alpenglow
1Aug 22, 2015
by Wbranch
Re: Coffin Fly Spinner
In Male Ephemera simulans Mayfly Spinner by Jackson
6Jun 10, 2009
by Martinlf
Re: stages before emergence
In the Insect Order Ephemeroptera by Troutnabout
7Sep 18, 2006
by Troutnut
Most Recent Posts
Re: Ephoron leukon on a stick
In the Identify This! Board by Wiflyfisher (AndyV replied)
Re: Burrowing Mayfly Nymph
In Fly Tying by Coha (Michimike replied)
Re: acentrella nymph
In the Mayfly Genus Acentrella by Goose (Wiflyfisher replied)
Re: Carpin'
In Fishing Reports by Martinlf (Brian314 replied)
Re: Correct hatch time of year Hydropsyche slossonae?
In the Caddisfly Species Hydropsyche slossonae by AndyV (Wiflyfisher replied)