Are these crane larvae?

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Entomology' started by Patrick Gould, Mar 12, 2013.

  1. Sure looks like Tipulidae.

    I've never had much luck with getting trout to take this large Diptera pattern. I've skated the adult patterns with great success, but the larvae stage patterns have failed over and over for me.

    Patrick Gould likes this.
  2. Interesting. In one section of the Yak near home these outnumber stonefly larvae 4-1. I was thinking that some of the success of the rubber legs stone pattern might have to do with it's resemblance to both these and stones.
  3. Good point. You may be onto the answer.

    I've caught plenty of fish with stone fly nymph patterns on the Arkansas River and others in Colorado where there are lots of these Crane Fly larvae. When I tried to imitate the Crane fly larvae stage specifically the results were unimpressive. I've tried several variations of the larvae pattern on various streams in both Montana and Colorado with underwhelming results.

    Maybe a more general pattern is the answer. I certainly subscribe to that thought and the results of general patterns like the Prince Nymph (Or should I say the "Nymph Formerly Known as Prince"), Gold Ribbed Hare's Ear, PTs, etc have clearly demonstrated the power of the general pattern.

  4. They look like the larva; the ones I saw last year on an Idaho river were grey/white in color...
  5. Up in BC one year I saw the biggest chronie shucks I'd ever seen. I now think they were cranefly shucks.
  6. I doubt it. Cranefly larvae only become available to the fish when they are washed out of the damp soil or mud along the riverbanks and they pupate and leave their shucks there as well (mud and damp soil). Back in the day (prior to repeated rehabilitations) Lenice used to have very large chironomids and a friend of mine frequently tied and fished a black one in a size 6. Many of the Canadian lakes have a very large brown chironomid, usually referred to as the "brown bomber".
  7. These were way bigger than that. The BC ones were in the range of 2 inches long. I've fished enough chironomids to know the difference. The Yakima had them laying in the leaves in the shallow water.
  8. Hi zen leecher aka bill w-

    By the time I noticed this thread, you had already correctly answered Patrick Gould's question concerning whether or not his posted photos were of crane fly larvae, so I chose to offer any comment. And, I would not choose to insert myself into a debate concerning the identity of a BC Dipteran (True Fly) larva for which no photo has been posted.

    Hi Preston-

    Although the vast majority of crane fly species are terrestrial (soil residents) in their larval lifestage, some crane fly species are semi-aquatic (damp streamside soil residents) in their larval lifestage, and some are fully aquatic (stream substrate residents) in their larval lifestage.
  9. Zen,
    I did recently come across a large (2-inch+) larva in the shallows on the lower Yakima the other day. It appeared to be dead and I suppose I should have taken a picture. It was a sort of cream color with no prominent markings. My first thought was that it might have been a cranefly but I've never seen one that large before.
  10. I found them in the "dirt" in the water at the Irene Rhinehart riverside park in Ellensburg. The ones I found were creamish also. I found lots in the sunken leaves on the bottom.

    Up in BC at one of the lakes out west of Williams Lake on highway 20 I was finding the biggest chronie shucks I'd ever seen. The shucks were 2 inches or so and not skinny like chironomid shucks.

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