Bug Profile : Paraleptophlebia

Paraleptophlebia Adoptiva Dun
With the season around the corner I thought I would bring back the bug profiles. This is where I highlight some upcoming hatches throughout the season to give you a title background on the bait!

The genus Paraletophlebia can be quite the big deal here in the east. These little fellas don't produce the largest hatches and many don't consider them to be that significant, I on the other hand disagree. In most places in our neck of the woods this will be the first significant mayfly hatch of the season. These little guys are what tees things off in the spring and sets the stage for fish for the remainder of the year. To my knowledge there are thirty-nine different species of Paraleptophlebia or "Paraleps" and most people call them. The most important species to eastern anglers will be Paraleptophlebia Adoptiva and in the west it will usually be Paraleptophlebia Debilis. The most common name these bugs are known by is the Blue Quill. They also go by Dark Blue Quills, Blue-Winged Duns, Jenny Spinners, and Mahogony Duns (not to be confused with Isonychia).

These little guys generally begin hatching when the water hits around 50 degrees and stay that way for a few days. The hatch doesn't usually last to long, at least from the anglers perspective because this hatch is usually quickly followed by the first "super hatch" of the year which will be the Hendricksons. Its not that this hatch stops its just that the fish start getting offered a bigger moire prolific bug. I think this is one of the most important hatches of the year because in my opinion it gets the fishes wheels turning about eating dry flies again and puts them on the feed for the first time all winter. Its not uncommon to have a hatch of these buggers during snow flurries.

In the east this is a smaller bug which can be imitated in sizes 16-20 where in the west anywhere from a 12-16. The duns are a light to dark brown color with a grey-blue wing hence the common name blue quill. The spinners don't change color much but their wings do turn translucent like most other species. They have long front legs, small secondary wings and three tails.
The nymphs are relatively easy to identify being long and slender with sparse gills on the abdomen. They usually migrate to the shallows to hatch but can be observed in the typical fashion of emerging from their shucks mid-current.
Paraleptophlebia Adoptiva Nymph

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