eel fly n [See quot 1852] chiefly c, cnNY
= mayfly n 1.
1852 Scientific Amer. 8.11 cNY, The approach of the eel season is known on the Oneida Lake by the eel fly, an insect with a long swallow tail, which comes in clouds, sometimes actually darkening the atmosphere at eventide. 1862 Roosevelt Game Fish 150 cnNY, The cisco is taken at Cape Vincent, with the eel-fly baited on a small hook. . . This fly . . is similar, both in appearance and habits, to the famous European May-fly. 1892 Amer. Fisheries Soc. Trans. 31 NEng, eNY, The May-fly and its larvæ are excellent food for trout. . . Along the Hudson and Connecticut Rivers they are known as the Eel-fly. 1938 Bergen Eve. Rec. (Hackensack NJ) 14 July 25/2, Local fishermen at Alexandria Bay in the Thousand Island section of New York State, have been concentrating on pike and pickerel . . because of the annual eel fly hatch which robs the bass of appetite for anything else. 1960 Teale Journey into Summer 38, Along the St. Lawrence they [=mayflies] are known as eel flies. 1967–69 DARE (Qu. R4, A large winged insect that hatches in summer in great numbers around lakes or rivers, crowds around lights, lives only a day or so, and is good fish bait) Infs NY6, 122, Eel fly; NY97, Eel fly—they are so thick sometimes that the road gets greasy; (Qu. R2) Inf NY171, Eel fly; (QR p120) Inf NY10, Eel fly—long wings, long tail, eels et ’em. 1971 Post–Std. (Syracuse NY) 16 June 38/1, Did you know . . . That the eel flies [in Oneida Lake] are at their lowest ebb? Low oxygen supplies in the deep water bottom in 1959 almost wiped them out. 2010 in 2019 DARE File—Internet cNY, There used to be huge hatches of Eel Fly on Oneida Lake here in CNY. Pollution led to their extinction in the lake by 1968 but my dad still remembers them.