Entomology (Study of Bugs)/Mystery Larva


Hello Walter,

I am a biology professor at Athens State University in Athens, Alabama. My entomology class and I captured the attached insect trifecta. One individual is a mayfly nymph, the second is (I believe) a Dipteran larva (horsefly? cranefly?) and the third is a mystery larva. We would appreciate an identification. The forelegs are unique. Could they be designed as scoops for detritus? Alga grazing?   

Thank you for your time.

Chris Otto

Hi Chris
I would agree that you have a dipteran larvae. The onlne in the middle appears to be amayfly. The smaller one is difficult to see in much detail but it looks to like a member of the Heptogeniidae ( A flathead mayfly) I basis this on the shape,size and triple cerci (which seem to be broken off.
 Mayflies in the Genus Heptophlebia have large forelegs like the one in the photo. Check them out and see what you think


Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Walter Hintz


I can answer any questions about insects and spiders.


I have taught science for over 57 years. I am presently teaching biology at the college level. I have done extensive graduate work in entomology.

Momentum Magazine The Ohio Journal of Science

B.S. In Ed Kent State Unuv M.Sc The Ohio State Univ National Science Foundation Fellowships: Electron Microscopy Univ of California Entomology Kent State Univ

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