Fishing Scuds and Sowbugs
Fishing with Sowbugs and Scuds works very well both in the Spring and in the Fall but not surprisingly trout will eat these crustaceans year round. An excellent source of protein, trout will crush these mini freshwater shrimps and bugs until they are unable to eat even a size 22 midge pupa. As mayfly and stonefly activity lessons for the winter sowbugs and scuds are continually getting washed into the water column making them easy targets for trout predation. Scuds look very much like freshwater shrimp and have a wide variety of colors including orange, pink, tan, olive, and even gray. Sowbugs look more like a roly poly found under a rock in your cellar and tend to be more gray or tan. Typically these bugs are significantly more common in tailwater fisheries but patterns like a firebead Ray Charles or a UV Eddie vedder can be productive both in the upper Madison and Gallatin Rivers. With this being said, scud and sowbug patterns crush it in the Spring and the Fall on the lower Madison, Missouri, Bighorn, and Beaverhead Rivers.
Yesterday’s snow has the staff here at your Bozeman Fly Shop thinking about the good ol’ nymph fishing days to come this Fall through Spring. Here are a few of our favorite scud and sowbug patterns. All best fished on a dead drift with a split shot (BB) about twice the depth of the water you are fishing. Stock up on these babies so you’re ready to catch all the trout this coming cold season.