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The Specimen

Dolophilodes distinctus (Tiny Black Gold Speckled-Winged Caddis) Caddisfly AdultDolophilodes distinctus (Tiny Black Gold Speckled-Winged Caddis) Caddisfly Adult View 6 PicturesThis is a really strange specimen. I would guess it's one of the dry caddis pupa that scoots across the surface of the water as a pupa rather than emerging right away. Its "wing pads (
The wing pads on this final instar Baetidae mayfly nymph are extremely dark.
The wing pads on this final instar Baetidae mayfly nymph are extremely dark.
Wing pad: A protrusion from the thorax of an insect nymph which holds the developing wings. Black wing pads usually indicate that the nymph is nearly ready to emerge into an adult.
" sure don't look right, though. Maybe they're deformed and that's why I was able to find this one as a pupa in the first place. It also looks like it might be a caddis adult missing its wings, but since I found three of them, that kind of rules out such an anomalous maiming.

I found this one and one other on a midstream rock. The previous day, I caught a similar creature kicking around on the water's surface.

This one died and shriveled a little bit before I could photograph it, but it's basically in its original shape.
Collected May 29, 2007 from Brodhead Creek in Pennsylvania
Added to by on June 4, 2007

The Discussion

IctoddJune 7th, 2007, 8:10 am
Posts: 1Ross (1944) mentions that Dolophilodes (Trentonius) distinctus adults "...remarkable b/c of the production of adults during the entire year, incl. the winter months, and the wingless condition of most of the females.....records indicate the females produced during the colder months are all wingless.....Winged females have been taken during the warmer months of the year." He goes on to mention that wing presence is caused by temperature reactions influencing late larvae. Was it a really cold stream? Seems late for ambient air influences.
TroutnutJune 7th, 2007, 9:04 am
Bellevue, WA

Posts: 2737
The stream was not unusually cold, although the previous night was.
Jason Neuswanger, Ph.D.
Troutnut and salmonid ecologist
Rjs887November 22nd, 2007, 6:10 pm
Posts: 1We get fantastic hatches of these on the Farmington river here in Connecticut. Two broods, summer and winter and the fish are always willing to eat the female pupa that skitters across the water. Starting in November the action gets really hot and continues through the winter till march. Colder days they come off later in the morning and can continue throughout the day, warmer days, they will come at daybreak.
GONZONovember 22nd, 2007, 7:41 pm
Site Editor
"Bear Swamp," PA

Posts: 1681
Hi Rich,

I've been hoping that we would eventually hear from a Farmington angler about these unusual caddisflies. Although they are quite common and widespread, it seems that nobody knows them as well or fishes them as often as the folks on the Farmington. These strange little buggers frustrated me for several seasons on the Lehigh, until I learned about the Farmington hatch and made the connection. Do you have a favorite imitation?


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