Grannom in the Kelvin?

I wish I had my wee sample bottle today – I am pretty sure I witnessed a hatch of Grannom in the Kelvin  – I kid ye not!

In spring, the first sedge fly of real importance to river fishers is the grannom, and it causes great excitement both on chalk streams and on rain-fed rivers. The grannom appears in April and the main hatch usually lasts for ten days or so, with flies coming off the water from mid morning until late afternoon.

Trout tend to ignore small upwinged flies when the grannom is on the water, but as other sedges are rare at that time a close imitation is probably unnecessary: any small sedge will do.

First Nature

I have never been lucky enough to witness a hatch of Grannom on the Clyde so when I seen little black sedgy type things fluttering around I was a bit unsure as to what they were – I suppose even if I did actually have my sample bottle there would have been a problem as I could not catch one to take a photo of.

I think this is why getting the hatch chart off the ground is so important – I know it will take a fair old amount of time until we actually have something resembling a month by month chart however it is going to be fun and informative while we do it.

If you have not already done so check out the Kelvin Hatch Chart thread for progress so far.

The Fishing

Even if it was Grannom the trout did not seem particularly interested – I caught a couple of trout on an enormous deer hair emerger (it was my indicator) and lost a couple.

On orders from Willie Yeomans I went back hunting the Skunk Cabbage from a few weeks ago…

Skunk Cabbage

Skunk Cabbage

It was a lot bigger – its yellow funnel was gone – I think maybe it was past the point of releasing its seeds – whatever – I stomped it into oblivion – and then pulled its roots out for good measure!

Weird plants – do not mess with me!


  1. Willie Yeomans · May 17, 2009

    The Clyde River Foundation is very interested in the whereabouts of skunk cabbage – we know of a pretty serious “cabbage patch” (sorry!) in Milngave but are interested in any records you might have. It’s a big beast of a plant and we are trying to get it added to one of the “undesirable” lists. Any records welcome.

  2. Paul · May 17, 2009

    Hi Alistair.
    I have witnessed plenty of Grannom hatching on the Kelvin.Especially around the bit near my old house.If you get a close look at one you can identify them by their green abdomen.Was going to head up the kelvin tonight but when the rain started pounding down I stayed in and tied pike flies instead.

  3. Paul R · May 17, 2009

    I too saw the Grannom today along with olives and some big yellow mays. Managed to get a hold of a Grannom floating by but not long enough for a picture. Similar story with my lovely trout which flicked itself back into the water after I had unhooked it!!!. About 1/2 a pound, caught on an olive klink. Loads of good trout rising. Hooked another couple and missed many more. It got colder with the rain later on and this seemed to switch the fish off.

  4. Jockayethenoo · May 17, 2009

    wouldn’t you be better going after Rhododendron… I hate those invasive big buggers… why is the skunk a “bad plant”??
    why are Grannom so important to the Kelvin Stewart??? (rushes off to google/wikipedia Grannom)!!!
    thanks very much…

  5. Campbell S · May 17, 2009

    I saw a Grannom in Kirky yesterday bumming a ride on my windshield, I really need to get out on the river.

  6. Jim Burns · May 17, 2009

    Have also seen plenty of Grannom hatching on the Kelvin and yes they have green abdomen.Tied up a couple of green hot butt Caddis size 14 and caught a couple of good size brownies the other night.Caught three brownies today best size yet this season and lost quite a few others ranging in size.Caught on hare’s ear spider with green thorax. As you said it got colder Paul R and the bigger fish went down but managed a couple of the stocked trout at Vet school. It’s good to put a face to the name will probably see you again down at the river.Keep trying for that big brownie that we could not catch today.

  7. Willie Yeomans · May 17, 2009


    Leaving aside the good plant/bad plant concept. Skink cabbage is non-native so it shouldn’t really be here (same as Rhodies) – the difference being that SC is very poorly studied in Great Britain. I’m not sure of the damage it can cause but there’s a wee burn in Milngavie where it coats both banks and could easily be having an effect on the local insect life, etc. I’d quite like to find out where it is and what can be done about it before we have another Himalayan Balsam or knotweed on our hands. I don’t think it’s likely to be as destructive as those two but we don’t know and these things ar ebetter nipped in the bud (sorry again) than allowed to naturalise. You can see why I’m looking for new records.


  8. Alex · May 17, 2009

    Hatches of Yellow Mays have begun on the Kelvin – saw a decent hatch of them last week after work, and a few were trickling off last night.

    Willie – I guess you will be interested to know that I found a crayfish claw at the lower, downstream end of the crawford stretch of the river Clyde on Saturday morning. This was approximately two miles downstream of Telford bridge. There was a claw and a few other ‘bits’ that looked like it may have been chewed up by an otter. If you like I can email you a map with the exact spot marked. I also took a photo of the claw which I would be happy to send on.



  9. JimL · May 17, 2009

    Grannoms on the Clyde (Crossford to Garrion area) came and went about a week to 2 weeks ago, I missed the best of them but a mate had a couple of 2lb ish sized Tout on small CDC & Elks.
    There’s still a few stragglers around but sadly the big main hatch has gone…. and I missed them again…. that sucks.

    I’ve got a few photos kicking around I’ll try and put them up in the forum if I can remember how to post photo’s.


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