Hatches Made Easy:

Eastern Blue-Winged Olives - Spinners (Drunella species)


Spinners of the Drunella genus usually mate and fall at night. One exception is
lata species that may fall late in the day. Spinners are a darker color with
clear wings. Unlike the
Baetis species of blue-winged olive spinners, these
usually fall over riffles and pocket water rather than calmer water. Most anglers
do not place much importance on the spinner fall. It is not near the event the
Baetis specie creates because the spinner fall is normally not nearly as dense.
We have not seen a spinner fall in the Smokies although we have found some
spinners during the day. I
assume they fall at night.

I welcome any additional information anyone has regarding the spinner falls of
the Eastern Blue-winged Olives in the park. I have probably read about
everything printed about them but I cannot substantiate any of it from experience
in the Smokies. We have found some rather heavy spinner falls in the early part
of the year that took place in Penn's Creek but that is a completely different type
of stream. I have never seen a spinner fall of these mayflies during September
and assume they occur at night. According to what I have read, spinner falls of
lata species are suppose to occur during the late afternoon hours. Most of
the species we have found in the Smokies were
lata species. Several species of
this mayfly have been recently re-classified by the entomologist and I expect
there may be some errors in what has been previously been written.
By the way, the duns and spinners are easy to identify. They are the only
Blue-winged Olives that have three tails and a large hind wing. There are not
any other mayflies hatching during the same time period that resembles the
Eastern Blue-winged Olives.

Coming Up Next:
Eastern Blue-winged Olive - Fly Pattern Colors

Copyright 2008 James Marsh
I am not 100% certain
that this Eastern
Blue-winged Olive is a
spinner. I shot this image
in the field and it flew
away before I could
examine it very much.  
The wings appear
translucent like a spinner
but the tails and legs
look rather short for a
spinner. The color is
more of a rusty brown
than the greenish
brown.of a dun