Daphne Cloud

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Entomology' started by Irafly, Feb 19, 2013.

  1. At Pass yesterday a few of us came across a massive cloud of Daphne on the launch side after a fairly steady 8 to 10 mph wind pushing that way all day. I couldn't tell how far down it went, but it started just under the surface, spanned anywhere between 3 and 4 feet wide and stretched about 30 yards parallel to the shore about 15' out. I reached in with my bailing bucket and there were a few hundred to a thousand in one scoop. I've spent a lot of time on the water but I've never seen that happen before.

    What I'm wondering is if it happens more often but it just happens deeper and we don't know it? Would there be anyway to predict where and when it might happen?

    If you ever come across it, don't pass it by, fish it! The fish were stacked in there and they readily ate the micro leech I showed them.
    Nick Clayton likes this.
  2. I would be very interested in hearing some of the expert's thoughts on this. I was telling James today, I honestly don't know if I would have noticed that if you guys hadn't pointed it out. It was a nice example of how it pays to pay attention to your surroundings on the water. It absolutely killed me to have to drag myself away from that.
  3. Fish it indeed.

    Mark Kraniger and jimmydub like this.
  4. I fished a seep lake over here last summer that had large daphnia clouds showing up on the sonar. The appeared 10 feet thick and stretching for a number of yards. Fish were spotted above the clouds.
  5. I've been doing a little research on Daphnia, and this is the best site I've come across so far: http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/accounts/Daphnia_pulex/

    It would appear that those little buggers have the ability to move up and down in the water column, changing depth with lighting. They feed in the shallow areas during low light, and move to deeper, shaded, or vegetated areas during daylight.
    Taxon likes this.
  6. I was really curious about this also after reading the report! time for some home work!!!
  7. Wrong color! I'll paint mine olive.
  8. This would explain why I would notice changes in the distance from shore moving closer and further away. It wouldn't happen fast but they would move in unison like a flock of starlings.

    Oh and yes daphnia not Daphne. My Scooby fly worked great.
  9. Their color will be predicated on what their food source is. You'll find them in a range of colors from brownish-olive, green, thru to yellow, and pinkish-red.
    jimmydub likes this.
  10. Daphnia feed on algae, so spring conditions leading to algal blooms can then lead to Daphnia blooms.

    Congrats on figuring how to entice the fish when they are otherwise gorging on Daphnia.

    Daphnia can interfere with spring chironomid fishing in my experience. I groan when I sample a fish and find mainly daphnia instead of mainly chironomids.

    Scooby fly?

  11. Over the past few seasons fishing in March in the basin it's been really common encounter daphnia in throat samples, especially early in the day. Fishing micro leeches seems to be a consistent way to catch those early season fish when there aren't many food sources available.

    Come early afternoon on sunny days I start looking for any bug activity. If chironomids are going to get active, it will probably happen during the warmest part of the day. When chironomids start showing up in throat samples, I start matching the hatch.
  12. When the Columbia Wildlife Refuge lakes were open in March I used to see lots of daphnia and the occasional leech in stomach samples. It was slim pickings for the fish right after the ice went off the lakes and the trout were in the shallows with the warmest water.
  13. I have only ever sampled them in brownish-olive to olive. Never have I personally seen an orange daphnia. I'll keep my eyes out though.
  14. If you are only seeing daphnia in throat samples it is likely there are not many mids around to be eaten. I don't groan when I see daphnia in a sample, because I did just land a fish to sample after all :)

    Scooby fly, you know Fred, Wilma, Daphne, Shaggy
    Nick Clayton likes this.

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