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Sunday
Jul262009

Black Caddis Fly

When I photographed this back in early June, I assumed that it was some sort of moth but I gave up trying to identify it when I couldn't find anything similar on UK Moths.  However, recently I realized that it is not a moth but a caddis fly (order Trichoptera), the clue being that it was in the foliage at the edge of the large lake.  Also, if it was a moth then, with antennae that long, it would have to be a longhorn moth, and there are no black longhorn moths, at least not in the UK.

There seems to be a real dearth of good information on caddis flies on the web and consequently I am unable to identify its family, never mind genus and species. [Note added 2011-12-17: I now think it is a Mystacides sp, possibly Mystacides azurea (Trichoptera: Leptoceridae). See the comments below.]

Photos taken in Whiteknights Park, Reading University grounds, Reading, UK, on 2009-06-04.

Reader Comments (2)

I foud one of these along the Jubilee River, Berkshire a cople of summers ago and an ecologist identified it for me as Mystacides azurea.
And tonight I have 3 more in my moth trap in Cookham, Berks.!
June 21 | Unregistered CommenterBrian Clews
Just yesterday morning I came across a Mystacides longicornis and few centimetres away from it was another black caddis fly that I was able to narrow down to probably either M. azurea or M. nigra.

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