The Importance of Entomology…
In its truest sense, entomology involves the study of insects where those in the know refer to species by their Latin names. Such long-winded and sometimes unpronounceable terms are what initially intimidate anglers who otherwise might be keen to understand more about bugs, with the obvious advantage of using their newfound knowledge to fool trout or grayling.
However, rather than struggling to get their tongue around such flies like Paraleptophlebia submarginata (Turkey Brown), anglers are better off relying on observation, which is what we might label as “Basic Entomology.” In a nutshell, this merely involves keeping your wits about you and trying to identify what trout might be feeding on.
One scenario here could be black gnats floating down the river. To the trout, these hapless black morsels are a tasty lunch and nothing more. Given this, all we need now is a small black dry fly presented so it drifts like the natural... no more to it than that. After all, the fish know nothing of genera, order, family, or Latin name for that matter, so why complicate things?
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This prehistoric-looking shuck left by a large stonefly is evidence that such creatures are active. All we simply need now is a longshank nymph of roughly the same size and colour.
Freshwater shrimps (Gammarus pulex), while fairly easy to identify, are not always obvious, as they are entirely aquatic. A quick root around with a pond-dipping net will establish if they exist where you aim to fish. Once determined they are present, something similar to a shaggy hare’s ear nymph dressed on a curved hook will adequately match the hatch, so to speak.