[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: Unusual aquatic catepillars(?)

Sounds to me like a species of caddis fly. These are common insects with
aquatic larvae that can be anywhere from near microscopic to an inch or so
long. The adults look passingly like a clear, hairy winged moth. I would
imagine a large cichlid or similar predatory fish would love these,though
you might have to take the first one or two out of its cacoon first.

They are mainly plant and detritus eaters, so if you want to grow them out
it might be best to include some plant and leaf litter in the bowl with
them. Are these from a pet store or a local pond or something? If they are
likely native to your state, then you should be able to figure out what they
are by taking them into a local university entemology department, or
alternately into a local tackle/fly fishing shop. Fishermen who tie flies
are often pretty good at identifying common local aquatic insects.

I have read more than once that herbivory can cause plants to slow their
growth. Makes sense, since why bother to grow so fast if all that new growth
is going to be eaten?

Brett Johnson
Green Man Gardens
bnbjohns at home_com


Date: Mon, 06 Nov 2000 09:53:41 -0700
From: Marshall Wilkinson <wilkinso at acs_ucalgary.ca>
Subject: Re: Unusual aquatic catepillars(?)

Hi people:

I have finally re-setup my 50gal aquarium...
Recently I began to notice alot of leaf litter floating on the surface and
in the uptake of my filter... Coincident with this was a marked slowing of
At first I thought it was the snails going on a rampage since the fish
population was quite plant friendly. Then I noticed a little worm encased in
some leaf litter inching it's way along the front glass... The beast had
fashioned 3-4 detached leaves around itself and dragged it's camoflage
around with him...Can we identify them? Ive kept a couple in a small
tupperware container to see if they metamorphose into something.
These catepillars are quite destructive.
Any thoughts on this?

Marshall Wilkinson
Calgary Alberta