Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Newly-hatched caddis fly





































I was sorting through some pondweed yesterday when I found this caddis larva. I don't know what the species is but I think it's one that lives between waterlogged dead leaves, rather than one that constructs a distinct tube to live in.



































I could see that it was just about to hatch - you can see the well-formed wings in this picture.



































A little later, when I looked again, the imago had hatched and climbed out on top of the waterweed. It's still drying its wings here and you can see the shed larval skin, down in the bottom right-hand corner of this photo. The caddis fly is still grooming one of its antennae.




































Here's a the shed skin a little closer - I wish I'd been around to see the imago slide its long antennae out of their larval skin.



































Still conducting pre-flight checks here.






































One newly-minted caddis fly, ready to take to the skies.

If you've never seen it, it's well worth checking out this web site and this video, to see some amazing bejewelled caddis fly larvae.


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