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Dobsonfly1 locationInsect/Spider
.: outdoor_lover :.
Aug 28 2012
Eagle Creek
TypeInsect/Spider
FamilyCorydalidae - Fishflies
Images Bing, Google

Coridalinae sp.

Common Names:Dobsonfly

Habitat:Widespread in both the Americas and Asia, as well as South Africa. The Larvae, called Hellgrammites, live under rocks in the bottoms of Lakes, Streams and Rivers. Adults remain in areas around Water, preferably where they grew up.

Description: Both male and female dobsonflies can reach lengths up to five inches (12.5 cm), measured from the tips of their pincers to the tips of their four wings. Their wingspans can be twice as long as their body length. The wings are densely lined with intersecting veins. When not in use, the wings are folded along the length of their bodies. Dobsonflies have long, multi-segmented antennae.

Though both male and female dobsonflies have sharp mandibles, those of an adult male dobsonfly are actually so big – up to 1 inch (25 mm) – that they are unable to harm humans, as they have such poor leverage that they are incapable of breaking the skin. Female dobsonflies, however, retain the short, powerful pincers they had as larvae, so they can inflict painful bites, which can draw blood.

The Larvae (Hellgrammites) prey on other insect larvae with the short sharp pincers on their heads, with which they can also inflict painful bites on humans. The larvae reach to 2" to 3" in length, with gills all along the sides of their segmented bodies that allow them to extract oxygen from water.

Comments: Notwithstanding the males' inability to inflict harm, when threatened both sexes will raise their heads and spread their jaws menacingly. They are not venomous, but possess an irritating, foul-smelling anal spray as a last-ditch defense.

Hellgrammites, also known as "go-devils" or "crawlerbottoms", are familiar to anglers who like to use the large larvae as bait. After a few years of living and growing underwater, the larvae crawl out onto land and pupate. They stay in their cocoons over the winter and emerge only to mate. Upon emerging, they live for only seven days.

Adults can generally be found from late spring into the middle of summer. They are primarily nocturnal, and like most aquatic insects, are commonly attracted to bright light. There are over 220 Species of Dobsonflies.

Source: Wikipedia
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