Content tagged with "aquatic insect"

Photo of a male giant water bug carrying eggs on back

Male Giant Water Bug With Eggs

After mating, the female lays her eggs upon the back of the male, where they remain, protected from predators, until they hatch. The egg-laden males are a remarkable sight.

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Photo of a mayfly


There are hundreds of species in North America.
The mayflies are a fascinating group of insects. The nymphs live from months to years under water, breathing through gills, and the adults fly around in the air, mating, living for only a day or two.

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Photo of mayfly nymph

Mayfly Naiad

The naiads (nymphs) of mayflies somewhat resemble the adults, though they lack wings and have a series of leaflike gills attached below the abdomen.

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Photo of a mayfly naiad crawling on rock underwater

Mayfly Naiad Crawling on Rock Underwater

Mayfly naiads (nymphs) often have flattened heads that help them to adhere to rocks in fast-flowing water. There are 3 (sometimes 2) long cerci extending from the abdomen tip.

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Photograph of several mosquito larvae resting at water surface

Mosquito Larvae ("Wrigglers")

Mosquito larvae are aquatic, with a large head and thorax and narrow, wormlike abdomen. They typically hang just below the water surface, breathing air through tubes at the end of the abdomen. When disturbed, they wriggle downward.

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image of Mosquito


There are about 50 species of mosquitoes in our state.
Who likes mosquitoes? Certainly not people! However, mosquitoes have lived on Earth for millions of years, and all that time they’ve been feeding fish with their legions of “wriggler” larvae.

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Photo of a predaceous diving beetle

Predaceous Diving Beetle

The body of predaceous diving beetles is streamlined, oval, with the narrower end at the head. When swimming, they kick both hind legs simultaneously (not alternately).

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Photo of predaceous diving beetle

Predaceous Diving Beetle With Air Bubble

Many aquatic insects carry a bubble of air against their bodies. Like a diving bell, it enables them to stay underwater longer.

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Photo of a predaceous diving beetle

Predaceous Diving Beetles (Water Tigers)

Species in the beetle family Dytiscidae
Like many aquatic insects, these large oval beetles prey voraciously on other aquatic organisms. Excellent swimmers, they fly well, too, and are often attracted to lights.

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Photo of a Slaty Skimmer dragonfly, female

Slaty Skimmer, Female

The slaty skimmer, Libellula incesta, has a body about 2 inches long. Young males and females have brown abdomens and a dark stripe running down the back. Each of the four wings has a dark spot on the outer leading edge.

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