Hatches Made Easy:

Midge - Larvae

Midge larvae look similar to tiny grub worms. They are long and skinny with
segmented bodies. They tend to be cream colored but there are many
exceptions to this. For example, the free-swimming bloodworm stores oxygen in
its blood and is a bright red color. The larvae of the free-swimming, glassworm
may be clear or transparent.
Most of the midge larvae in streams nationwide construct mud tubes. They
remain in these mud tubes on the bottom until they develop into pupae. Then
they assent to the surface and hatch into adults. This variety is not plentiful in
the park's streams. The free-swimming species are the ones in the larvae stage
that are important to anglers in the park. The ones that build mud tubes are not
important. Some species construct other types of tiny cases or tubes in which
they live. These larval cases stand upright on the bottom and are not important
to anglers.
The free-swimming larvae that are important to us anglers tend to hide and stay
put under rocks, sticks and other similar type cover. The can swim. They wiggle
to  propel themselves. They can also crawl.
We will cover the methods of fishing larvae imitations soon.

This midge larva was one of several
hundred just like it that we found in the
Little River. We placed it in a white
pan in some water and took this macro
image of it. Of course it is only one of
many colors that exist in the park but
this color is rather plentiful. My guess
is this would be about a hook size 24.
That is a tiny straw next to it that we
could not remove even with tweezers.  

Coming Up Next:
Midge Pupae and Adults

Copyright 2008 James Marsh