About Yellow Quills
Yellow quills are members of the clinger group of mayflies, so the nymphs are seldom available to trout until emergence. Hatches can be sporadic and often lack enough intensity to generate selective feeding. But some days the hatches are significant, and if you are not prepared you'll be shut out.
The hatch has baffled some fly anglers because in many localities it occurs at the same season as the pale morning duns and the adult is a similar color. Closer observation reveals that the yellow quill is bigger and the wing is yellow, not blue-gray.
It's important to know which is hatching, yellow quills or PMDs. Not only is the yellow quill bigger, but the dun usually hatches underwater and drifts to the surface. Trout prefer to take them underwater, so a dry fly is of limited use during a hatch. A yellow-bodied Soft Hackle presented on a wet-fly swing is a good tactic.
Spinner falls of all Epeorus species can be--but usually aren't--important. While the spinners usually fall onto the riffly water where they laid their eggs, they tend to drift downstream and collect in backeddies or quiet water below the riffles. That is where trout wait for them and where you should cast your imitation.
Another species of Epeorus, the pink albert, is covered elsewhere.
Articles About Yellow Quills
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Epeorus: The Yellow Quills Yellow quill, pink albert, pink lady. Whatever you call it, it's an Epeorus. But the hatch leaves many anglers baffled and fishless until they are enlightened about this critter's unusual habits. Jeff Morgan