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GeorgeMcFly 06-18-2009 01:09 AM

lake erie mayfly hatch!!!
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posted the hatch last year and just went outside and this years hatch has come!!!! they call um canadian soldiers. millions of them covering every surface! I live a block or 2 away from the lake. I think these are hexagenias? should last a week or so. here is some pix! enjoy! cars are covered with um, roads are covered, my whole house is covered and so is all the lake I am sure! its a great sign of a healthy lake! wonder if fish would hit hexagenia drys flys now? we don't have trout only bass and stuff. these things always come right when its a rain. man the midges just left! we call those a sandfly. I should of posted the midge hatch before but forgot. wait i might have a pic! here is one!they lasted extra long this year. enjoy!

Flyfisher for men 06-18-2009 09:41 AM

Re: lake erie mayfly hatch!!!
Smallmouth bass will hit hexagenias; at least they will on the Huron River of SE Michigan, and it flow into Erie. I understand it's a night hatch primarily, though.

I'll be in that area this summer and will likely do a little fishing. I've come up with a hex nymph pattern and will work on a dun as time permits.

HuronRiverDan 06-18-2009 10:20 AM

Re: lake erie mayfly hatch!!!
George, go check the V; if there are silty areas you know of on the river they may hatch there. Smallies definitely will respond to a hex hatch. The Huron here in SE MI sees a nice hatch toward the end of July and it is a great evening fishing opportunity.


peregrines 06-18-2009 10:55 AM

Re: lake erie mayfly hatch!!!

Yup, those look like Hex- big enough to have commercial plates with 2 tails. Fishing should be great with every fish in the lake feeding on them- bass love 'em. The fishing should be great if fish can find your fly in the blizzard of real ones. The fishing should last well into dark over mucky bottoms.

Here's some info from troutnut:
Mayfly Species Hexagenia limbata (Hex) Hatch

You may want to consider a road trip up to Michigan in a week or two for some trout fishing on the Ausable :).

Another hatch you may run into on Lake Erie is the whitefly hatch, which should start late July and into August (also evenings into dark). A size 10-12 White Wulff should work for them. SM and LM Bass love them too. Both the Hex and white fly hatch are dense enough that they show up on weather radar--- and have been responsible for delaying the start of night baseball games.

There are some great Hex patterns out there, some pretty involved- extended bodies, articulated nymphs etc. Since time is of the essence, here’s some quick and dirty ones:

Hex Nymph:
Hook: size 4, 6 and 8 3xl nymph hook
Thread: Yellow
Weight: lead wraps
Tail: Dark Ginger wet fly hackle fibers or pheasant tail fibers
Body: Olive marabou, twisted and wrapped like peacock herl or picked out scruffy Medium Olive nymph dubbing (rabbit, haretron etc)
Wing case: Dark Brown Turkey wing quill slip, or tail fibers
Legs: Dark Ginger

Hex Compara/Sparkle Dun
Hook: Size 6-8 4x long streamer hook (Use the big hooks for females, smaller ones for males) I use the streamer hooks to avoid tying extended bodies.
Thread: Olive
Tail: Brown Mink tail fibers, fibbets or bristles from a nylon paint brush, elk or moose mane fibers tied split (or Tan Antron, Z-lon or sparkle yarn shuck)
Body: Creamy-Olive dry fly dubbing (Superfine, Fly Rite etc)
Wing: Arc wing of Medium gray deer hair (sold as “Coastal” or Comparadun” hair)
Hackle: Optional, but you could add a couple of wraps behind and in front of the wing with medium dun hackle if you have some big enough (spade hackle or Coq de Leon)

Hex Spinner
Hook: Size 6-8 4x long streamer hook (Use the big hooks for females, smaller ones for males)
Thread: Olive
Tail: Ginger Mink tail fibers or fibbets, or nylon bristles from a paint brush tied split
Body: Creamy-Yellow (for female) or Reddish Brown (for male) dry fly dubbing (Superfine, Fly Rite etc)
Wing: If you can find hackle large enough, Light dun and Ginger mixed tied in 360 degree collar to skitter or trim flat on stream to lie flush in film, or you could just tie it with some white Bill’s Body Braid or Poly spent wings.

Since this is often a night time deal, having a headlamp is a big help. There are some great ones out there Petzel etc, but they can be expensive. You can can a decent one for cheap, like a Rayovac 3-in-1 LED for 16 bucks. The thing I like about it is that it’s light, runs on 3 AAA batteries and has a red LED light as the first option on the clicker (doesn’t spook fish). I wear it as a neck light rather than a head lamp and only use it when needed. 3 in 1 LED Head-Lite Headlamp Flashlight: Home Improvement

Good luck, hope you get into them.


shorthaul 06-18-2009 05:57 PM

Re: lake erie mayfly hatch!!!
The bigger ones are hex and i think the smaller mayflies are brown drakes, They usually hatch separately but they came off at the same time this year. They both generally hatch at night the times they are available to the fish are the nymph, the hatch and a few days later at the spinner fall when the females lay their eggs and die on the water---usually again at night.

The perch were eating the midges (muckleheads or as you call them "sand flies")
All you have to do is get your # 18 nymph down to 30-40 ft.

GeorgeMcFly 06-18-2009 06:02 PM

Re: lake erie mayfly hatch!!!
thanks for the info

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