Top 5 Spruce Moth Patterns – Fins and Feathers Bozeman
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Top 5 Spruce Moth Patterns

The spruce moths are starting to appear along the Gallatin River in Southwest Montana and represent an import source of food for trout and an exciting method of fishing for anglers. The spruce bud moth (Zeiraphera canadensis) is a terrestrial insect that is exotic to Montana and makes its home in the trunks of spruce trees. These moths create mixed opinions because of their habit of harming white spruce trees by burrowing into the wood and affecting the growth of the tree, while they are favored by anglers due to the food options they offer to trout on rivers that are flanked by white spruce.

These insects create a late summer hatch in late July to August, a time when insects are no longer hatching at the same frequency. Opportunistic fish will prey on the spruce moth when it flutters too close to the surface of the water, making for exciting takes that rival salmonflies and hoppers. The Gallatin River is a prime location for spruce moth hatches because of the foliage surrounding the river consists of spruce trees along certain sections.

Spruce moth patterns resemble large elk hair caddis patterns that mimic the fluttering wings of the moth. These patterns are generally in sizes 12-14 and often times have larger and flatter wings compared to the caddis patterns. As an angler it is important to properly imitate the insect in order to get consistent results from finicky fish, so before you head out to the Gallatin make sure to pick up some of the top 5 spruce moth patterns at our Bozeman Fly Shop.

Spruce Almighty

YFG Spruce Moth

Richter Scale

Parachute Spruce Moth

Elk Hair Spruce Moth

When fishing the spruce moths don't be afraid to give them a twitch or two to simulate the movement of the moth as it skates across the surface of the water and be ready for an agressive take as a fish rushes to secure its next meal. Head out to the water on the Gallatin armed with the best patterns to target moth eating fish. Tight lines!