‘caders

cicadai was just a little boy, not sure what year but i definitley recall a certain and very strong alarm or rather, worysome anxiety all around me at school, with family and friends and even on the news:

The CICADAS are Coming !!!”

we’d made it through the Bay of Pigs and the Beatles, we where getting the three daily number reports from Vietnam- US soldier death and injuries, and enemy death tolls and people where freaking out over a few goggly-eyed bugs. come on…
they did indeed arrive and it wasn’t just a few. i clearly remember hearing these things approaching something like 24 hours before they finally got to my neighbourhood. the constant droning was an equal mix of spooky-as and fascination and something that had this little boy all excited. adults had told us they where completely inoffensive, they didn’t bite, scratch or sting but you know, kids are kids and the grapevine had them depicted as blood-sucking demons that could enter your ears and nibble on your brains. even if none of that super-cool-grodey-exciting stuff ever happened, it’s enough to say that we all wore our winter hats pulled down low.

whether at school or at home we all where on ‘look up patrol’ eagerly scrutinizing the sky awaiting their arrival. the idea was that the first to spot one would phone the others of the gang to warn them of the devil’s coming but cell phones where only to be found in science fictions novels at that time and most of us didn’t even have permission to use the home phone by ourselves.
regardless, the creepy ‘cader things came. it was like sheets of big bug rain, they’d stupidly fall down the back of your shirt, splatter on windows and windshields, would slap you in the face as they zig-zagged about and where basically not so interesting after all and annoying as hell. and loud.
you couldn’t take a step with smooshing several, i can still remember the sound. throwing them at both other boys and girls to hear them squeel got old quick:  “once you’ve seen a million cicadas you’ve seen them all” or so i’d thought, until i found this fantastic short by Samuel Orr that depicts a complete lifecycle of these strange and crunchy creatures.

now, this film isn’t about fly fishing but then of course it is. i haven’t had the luck/oportunity/chance to be in an area when they’ve accomplished their every 17 year come out since i’ve been a fisher but its really high up there on the wishlist and that little boy’s excitement is still there but this time it’s with a purpose; to catch big-big trout who love to eat big-big bugs.
as always when fishing i’ll have a hat of some sort on but at least i won’t have to worry so much about having my brains sucked dry. i hope you’ll enjoy Samuel’s film as much as i did.

edit- no matter what i do the video starts at 1:15… this is a first and don’t know what to do about it. please use the slider to get the beginning. sorry.

the last Molt

i can’t figure out why but this dun to spinner transformation stuff gets me all excited ! after two seconds i immediately shut down the sucky music and found myself grunting along with the beast simultaneously shouting PUSH – PULL – PUSH !!!
for the full exhilarating experience i suggest you do the same. note how near the end it just ‘walks away’ from its front-right leg just as any self-respecting zombie might do. too cool, enjoy !

 

American Trout-Stream Insects

by Louis Rhead 1914 via OpenLibrary
Am. trout-stream insects TLC 8-11-13
without a doubt we can be pretty sure that hatch timetables and even bug species in the last ninety-nine years have come to be inexistent in some areas while others have taken their place, we’re still left with an enormous wealth of information regarding river-side insect life and how to put this to good use.
geared towards U.S. rivers, anglers from around the world will find similarities and usefulness for their own waters. besides, i’m not sure it really matters, it’s a great read regardless and maybe a reminder that bugs is bugs and fishes is fishes and fly fishing hasn’t changed all that much and there’s still a lot to learn from the past.
americantroutstr00rhearich_0053the many hand-drawn plates created by the author back up all the groovy buggy-fishy info with beauty, further sharing the notion that it’s not just a matter of fish food and catching fish but of creatures to be admired on their own and thank you Mr Rhead for that.
americantroutstr00rhearich_0001
click either image for 177 pages of old school coolness online or HERE to download PDF, Kindle and others to enjoy this offline.

dead bug dance

as fly fishers, we tend to think every bug ends up being eaten by some lovely fish or squashed on the windscreen on the way home. that’s not true.

Mayfly chit-chat

here’s an amusing little extract from Terry Pratchett’s ‘Reaper Man‘, enjoy !

The sun was near the horizon.
The shortest-lived creatures on the Disc were mayflies, which barely make it through twenty-four hours. Two of the oldest zigzagged aimlessly over the waters of a trout stream, discussing history with some younger members of the evening hatch.
“You don’t get the kind of sun new that you used to get,” said one of them.
“You’re right there. We had proper sun in the good old hours. It were all yellow. None of this red stuff.”
“It were higher, too,”
“It was. You’re right.”
“And nymphs and larvae showed you a bit of respect.”
“They did. They did,” said the other mayfly vehemently.
“I reckon, if mayflies these hours behaved a bit better, we‘d still be having proper sun.”
The younger mayflies listened politely.
“I remember,” said one of the oldest mayflies, “when all this was fields, as far as you could see.”
The younger mayflies looked around.
“It’s still fields,” one of them ventured, after a polite interval,
“I remember when it was better fields,” said the old mayfly sharply.
“Yeah,” said his colleague. “And there was a cow.”
“’That’s right! You’re right! I remember that cow! Stood right over there for, oh, forty, fifty minutes. It was brown, as I recall.”
“You don’t get cows like that these hours.”
“You don’t get cows at all.”
“What’s a cow?” said one of the hatchlings.
“See‘?” said the oldest mayfly triumphantly. “That’s modern Ephemeroptera for you.” It paused. “What were we doing before we were talking about the sun‘?”
“Zigzagging aimlessly over the water,” said one of the young flies. This was a fair bet in any case.
“No, before that.”
“Er ….you were telling us about the Great Trout.”
“Ah. yes, Right. The Trout. Well, you see, if you’ve been a good mayfly, zigzagging up and down properly – ”
“ – taking heed of your elders and betters – “
“ – yes, and taking heed of your elders and betters, then eventually the Great Trout – ”
Clop
Clop 
“Yes?” said one of the younger mayflies.
There was no reply.
“The Great Trout what?” said another mayfly, nervously,
They looked down at a series of expanding concentric rings on the water.
“The holy sign!” said a mayfly. “I remember being told about that! A Great Circle in the water! Thus shall be the sign of the Great Trout!”
The oldest of the young mayflies watched the water thoughtfully. It was beginning to realise that, as the most senior fly present, it now had the privilege of hovering closest to the surface.
“They say,” said the mayfly at the top of the zigzagging crowd, “that when the Great Trout comes for you, you go to a land flowing with…., Flowing with…..” Mayflies don’t eat. It was at a loss.
“Flowing with water,” it finished lamely.
“I wonder,” said the oldest mayfly.
“It must be really good there,” said the youngest,
“Oh‘? Why?”
“’Cos no one ever wants to come back.”

caddis portraits

i’m going off to talk to the trout  for a few days next to the Norwegian border and wanted to leave you some creepy-crawly caddis portraits for your enjoyment.
there may or may not be internet connexion but i’ll try to post at least some images during the stay.

and the weirdest and rarest one of all, a USNM Trichoptera

image source: Google Images

enjoy and have a great week-end !

the First Fly

via Jeroen Schoondergang

” forget the Egyptians and Macedonians with their feathered hooks. The oldest record of fly fishing dates 40 million years back. As you can see the fly is tied on a barbless circle hook and is a pretty realistic tie. Bummer that the owner dropped his fly in running amber… “

a pretty good example that things aren’t always what they seem and that we mostly see what we want to see.
good one Jeroen ! 😉

image: George Poiner
source: Astrobiology Magazine