Short-Winged Stonefly

Common Names: Short-wing stonefly, summer stonefly
Scientific Name: Classinea subulosa

Short-wing stoneflies are closely related to golden stoneflies . This species is unique to the northern tier of the West. Females have normal wings, but the wings of males are too small for flying. Bugs crawl around on the ground to find a mate, then gravid females crawl (not fly) onto the water to lay their eggs. They can actually walk across the surface of the water, but they're not likely to get far before attracting the attention of hungry trout.

As you might guess, most of the action is near the bank. Some anglers do well with a Madam X . They dead-drift it on the surface until it is below them, then they pull it under and retrieve in short pulls with a pause between pulls. This makes sense when the short-winged stoneflies are on the water. Because they walk, not fly, they often sink below the surface and struggle against the current.

You could also use a size 6 Stimulator or Clarks Stonefly with a tan body and use a skating presentation.

Activity is usually in September and early October.

 

How to Match a Short-winged stonefly

Hatches are matched from Westfly's database of "standard" fly patterns.

Nymph
Size 6-10 Kaufmanns Stonefly, Rubber Legs. tan-yellow, dirty yellow
Bankwater near foilage: indicator, tight line
Adult
Size 6-10 Chubby Chernobyl, Clarks Stonefly. tan-yellow, dirty yellow
Bankwater near foilage: standard dry fly
Adult
Size 6-10 Madam X, Stimulator. tan-yellow, dirty yellow
Bankwater near foilage, riffles, moderate-fast runs, backeddies, seams: standard dry fly, skating
Egg-layer
Size 6-10 Stimulator, Madam X, Clarks Stonefly, Chubby Chernobyl. tan-yellow, dirty yellow
Bankwater near foilage, riffles, moderate-fast runs, backeddies, seams: standard dry fly, skating, surface swing, shallow nymph

 

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Characteristics

NYMPH COLOR: Mottled dark brown

ADULT SIZE: 22-38 mm

ADULT COLOR: Yellow-brown to golden head and abdomen; medium brown wing.

OTHER CHARACTERISTICS: Adult males have short wings--too short to fly.