Creek Critters: Water Striders

by Bonnie Ross Among aquatic insects, long-legged water striders are about the easiest to see. They live on the water surface film and they tend to congregate in large numbers. One genus, would you believe, lives on the surface of the ocean, sometimes many miles from land! Water striders belong to the family Gerridae within […]

Creek Critters: May Flies

by Bonnie Ross Mayflies are found in a diverse array of aquatic habitats from standing water to cold and rapid head-water streams. They are ecologically very important; essentially being the first-order consumers in all water bodies they inhabit. As a preferred for most aquatic and terrestrial insectivores, they survive by sheer numbers alone. Mayflies were […]

Creek Critters: Dragonflies

by Bonnie Ross The other day as I was walking to my car, a gleaming object on the hot pavement caught my eye. I bent down and picked up a dead dragonfly that seemed to radiate iridescent colors from its huge eyes, its long, delicate abdomen, and its stained-glass like wings. I decided at once […]

Creek Critters: The Giant Water Bug

by Bonnie Ross This is the first in a series of articles about aquatic insects. By way of introduction, an extinct relative of the modern-day mayfly was first detected in 250 million year old rocks. Today, 30,000 aquatic insect species representing 12 insect orders have been named. There are even aquatic members of the butterfly […]