Blue Wing Olive

Blue Wing Olive

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BWO
Blue Wing Olive
Tying Instructions
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      Actual Blue Wing Olive
      Blue Wing Olive

 

Life Cycle:BWO Life Cycle

The Blue Wing Olive mayfly begins its life cycle on the bottom of the stream or river as a nymph. BWO are swimmers so the nymphs are torpedo-like in shape and can quickly swim to the surface once they are ready to "hatch". Once the nymph reaches the surface the nymph has to penetrate the surface film with the top of its back and split open. The dun emerges from the nymphal shuck and lofts into the air or may ride on the surface with extended legs as the wings dry before lifting off for streamside vegetation. The BWO's are rather small in sizes 16 to 20. From the vegetation, the duns will molt into spinners and the males and females will mate with the female returning to the water surface to lay eggs. Some will actually swim back down to the river bottom and lay the eggs directly on the streambed. The females will expire on the surface with it's wings outstretched, this is known as the "spinner fall".

Blue Wing Olives prefer to hatch when it's cool and drizzly, often in early to mid-afternoon. On our Sierran streams you will most likely encounter hatches starting in late September and continuing through November, although the hatches might occur at any time. They will not show up during the hot months of summer or when the winters are brutally cold. Another hatch period is in the Spring during March through June. The life cycles are short, only 4 months, so that there might be 2-3 generations of BWO's each year. The spinner adults will have varying shades of olive, gray, and brown. The wings will be a dark, smoky/blue color.

The streams or rivers with the greatest concentrations of Blue Wing Olives will have slow to moderate flowing water. Back eddies can be very productive as well as foam lines.

Within the dry fly category, we have Blue Wing Olives with the standard Catskill pattern, Extended Body, and the Thorax Dun. The emergent forms are very important as the fish key upon this stage. The parachute patterns often cover this emergent form by presenting the body of the fly within the surface film and allowing good visibility with the wingpost. Other important emergent forms are the RS2, Brooksprout, and CDC Dun. A good fishing tip is to use a dry fly with an emerger trailing the dry by 24 inches.

 

Other Patterns:

Thorax Dun, BWO
Thorax Dun, BWO
Tying Instructions
Materials: (to Order Material, click the link)

 

 

Quilled Parachute, BWO
Quilled Parachute, BWO
Tying Instructions

 

Materials: (to Order Material, click the link)


Biot Body Parachute Dun, BWO
Biot Body Parachute BWO
Tying Instructions

Materials: (to Order Material, click the link)

 

Extended Body, BWO
Extended body BWO
Tying Instructions


Materials: (to Order Material, click the link)

 

Brooksprout, BWO
Brooksprout BWO
Tying Instructions


Materials: (to Order Material, click the link)

 

CDC Dun, BWO
CDC Dun BWO
Tying Instructions


Materials: (to Order Material, click the link)

      

 

RS2, BWO
RS2 BWO
Tying Instructions


Materials: (to Order Material, click the link)

      
©2022 Steve Schalla
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