What is the Hendrickson Mayfly Hatch? Hendrickson Mayfly Entomology

by in Fly Hatches


The Hendrickson Mayfly Hatch, (Ephemerella subvaria) also known as the Dark Hendrickson, Red Quill, Lady Beaverkill or  Borcher Drake Hatch is an East and Midwest hatch that begins in Early April and extends through early June, lasting 2-3 weeks on a given river.  Their color varies as a function of the food they eat, and the sex of the insect, where the males are generally darker than the females.

Hendrickson Nymph: are not good swimmers, so a deep, dead drifted Hare’s ear can be effective.  Males are brown/olive, where females are brown/tan.

Hendrickson Nymph
Hendrickson Nymph. Image by Jason Neuswanger from TroutNut.com

A Few good imitations for Hendrickson Nymphs:  See All Hendrickson Nymphs

Anato-may Nymph - Olive
Anato-may Nymph - Olive
Anato-may Nymph - Tan
Anato-may Nymph - Tan
Pheasant Tail - Copper Bead
Pheasant Tail - Copper Bead
Hare's Ear - Olive
Hare's Ear - Olive
Hare's Ear Nymph - Brown Beadhead
Hare's Ear Nymph - Brown Beadhead
Wide Body Mayfly Nymph - Olive
Wide Body Mayfly Nymph - Olive


Hendrickson Emerger:  Hendricksons swim up, break the surface film of the water and break out of their exoskeleton.  This helpless emerger is often the prime target of feeding trout.  Watch for gentle rises at the surface, and imitate this with a cripple or floating nymph.

Hendrickson Emerger
Hendrickson Emerger. Image by Jason Neuswanger at TroutNut.com












A Few good imitations for Hendrickson Emergers:    See All Mayfly Emergers

Pheasant Tail - Flashback
Pheasant Tail - Flashback
Hare's Ear - Flashback
Hare's Ear - Flashback
Little Spanker - Pheasant Tail
Little Spanker - Pheasant Tail
Challenged Mayfly Emerger - Pheasant Tail
Challenged Mayfly Emerger - Pheasant Tail
Cripple Pale Morning Dun
Cripple Pale Morning Dun
Film Critic - Grey Drake
Film Critic - Grey Drake



Hendrickson Dun:  The Dun drifts down the river while drying off its wings, then takes flight.  Trout also target this phase of the insect hatch.  Males have darker colored bodies, and are distinct enough from the lighter females, that carrying multiple colors of duns is important when trout become super selective.

Male Hendrickson Dun
Male Hendrickson Dun. Image by Jason Neuswanger from TroutNut.com
Female Hendrickson Dun
Female Hendrickson Dun. Image by Jason Neuswanger from TroutNut.com

A Few Good Hendrickson Duns:  See All Hendrickson Duns

Dark Hendrickson
Dark Hendrickson
Dark Henny
Dark Henny
Parachute Deer Hair Henny
Parachute Deer Hair Henny
Parachute Henny
Parachute Henny
Parachute Dark Hendrickson
Parachute Dark Hendrickson
Light Hendrickson
Light Hendrickson

Hendrickson Spinner:  More often, male spinners return to the water first, with females returning later.  Trout often eat male spinners, but switch over later on to female spinners.  

Flatwater Spinner
Flatwater Spinner
Rusty Spinner
Rusty Spinner
Spinner Profile
Spinner Profile

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