Saturday, November 21, 2015

It's the "rapid" Rapidan at the moment -- but I got some nice photos

Actually, it was pretty scary up there this morning.  The water was very high and very fast (see the photo below), and I had to stay close to the shore to look through the leaf packs.  Lots of pronggilled mayflies now, and a smattering of small winter stoneflies.  But I did find some insects that made for very nice photos.

The first, a Lepidostomatid.  I didn't keep it, so I can't be sure of the genus ID -- but it's probably Lepidostoma.  In any event, I couldn't resist taking some shots of that beautiful case.

Excellent photos of the adults in Ames' Caddisflies: A Guide to Eastern Species for Anglers and Other Naturalists, pp. 186-189.  I take it these hatch as the "scaly brown sedge" in March and April.  But at time of year, anglers at the Rapidan will be focussing on prolific hatches of "yellow sallies."

And the other treasure this morning -- the "golden stones," Agnetina capitata.   Since I reviewed the species identification of A. capitata in my entry of 9/7, I'll just point out the 1) setal row on the occiput, and 2) the presence of anal gills.

I found three nymphs in the leaf packs, and since I seem to find this species in a regular way at the Rapidan River, I'm starting to wonder just how "rare" it is.  Beaty's comment: "Listed by NC Natural Heritage Program as Significantly Rare (2010)."  ("The Plecoptera of North Carolina," p. 15).


The sunlight was great, but the water...roaring!

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