Wisconsin Mayfly Hatch Caught on Radar

June 5, 2010 By: Marshall Cutchin

On May 29 at around 9:13 PM NOAA’s radar registered a billion or two tiny dots over and around La Crosse, Wisconsin, on the Mississippi River. The sensitive scanner (no doubt operated by a fly fishing fanatic) shows in glorious scale why every year about this time bridges become slippery with insect bodies, windshield wipers become fly swatters, and campers suspect they may have stumbled into the remake of a classic horror movie.
The mayflies show “up as bright pink, purple, and white colors along the Mississippi River mainly south of La Crosse, WI. After the bugs hatch off the water and river areas, they are caught in the south-southeast winds while airborne for about 10-20 minutes.” (Thanks to reader Bruce Harris for this link.)