Thursday, January 29, 2009

Invertebrate sampling on the Ribble.

Stoneclinger nymphs: likely ecdyonurus torrentis/dispar (large brook dun/autumn dun).

Cased caddis: probably athriposodes cinereus (brown silverhorn).

Caseless caddis: hydropsyche

With little doing on the fishing front, I did a bit of kick sampling on our beat of the Ribble today. At three seperate sites, most of the usual suspects were present with the exception of small stonefly nymphs and a notable dearth of mature baetid nymphs (only tiny immature ones were present and then only in small numbers). This may be due to the fact that the river was up nearly 2' and the shallows in which I was sampling would more normally be high and dry. It is possible therefore that the sample was unrepresentative, consisting mainly of those species which are quickest to migrate onto new feeding grounds.

The most abundant species were ecdyonurus clinger nymphs and small cased caddis larva, likely to be those of the longhorn sedges. When I looked closely, it was apparent that the latter were present in very large numbers, although I missed spotting them in the net at first, mistaking them for bits of stone and twig. I'll have a look at devising a pattern to imitate them soon......

Whether it was a coincidence or not I'm not sure, but the lack of baetis nymphs seemed to be reinforced by a complete lack of emergent adults on what appeared to be an ideal day for a hatch - I didn't see a single dun all day.


phil-k said...

Brilliant photographs.Those stoneclingers look enormous.

Me and Mike will be seeing what we can find in the once polluted rivers here in Manchester.Should be interesting.If we find anything that is.:)

Matthew Eastham said...

Cheers Phil!
I bet you will find a few beasties in your local stream. If you do find any small heptagenids (they're the clingers) then that's a good indicator of water quality - they are said to only tolerate a small amount of impurity.

whatever you find, it will give you a good idea what to tie on your leader this coming season - good luck!

Mike Duddy said...

I'm not as confident as you two and have therefore been looking up a few leech patterns.

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