Stonefly
( Plecoptera )


2014-0420-EB550148-PLE01995-Plecoptera[1450h13s,F,A,plant-leaf]{EXD}-G.jpg

PHOTO COMMENT

IDENTIFICATION
Identification:Plecoptera
(Burmeister ,1839 )
Common Name:Stonefly
Life Stage:(A) adult

PHYLOGENY

Phylum:Arthropoda
Class:Insecta
Superorder:Polyneoptera
Order:Plecoptera
Taxon Code:PLE01995
ITIS/TSN:102467

LOCATION DETAILS
Location Name
Tilden Regional Park, Tilden Regional Park, Tilden Regional Park, Berkeley
County:Alameda County
ECI Site#:CAEB550000
Open Space Location:Tilden Regional Park

RECOGNITION
Description
Adult: Wings - Drab colored with four membranous wings held flat over the abdomen when at rest. Front wings narrower than hind wings; expanded anal lobe of hind wing often folded fan-like at rest; wings of males of several species reduced or absent. Antennae - Long, slender, many-segmented. Abdomen - Cerci often long and prominent. Mouthparts: Adapted for chewing. Nymph: Body flattened and elongate with two, usually long cerci; most nymphs have tufts of branched respiratory gills on sides of thorax and around bases of legs; the gills are filamentous, not plate-like or leaf-like.
Body Length
4-5, or 40-50 mm.
Diversity
SF Bay Area: 3 Suborders are known: Nemouroidea, Perloidea and Pteronarcyoidea. America, north of Mexico: More than 670 species in more than 100 genera and 9 families. Worldwide: More than 3,400 spcies in about 300 genera and 18 families.
Child Taxa
Superfamilies with representatives in California include Nemouroidea, Perloidea and Pteronarcyoidea.
Similar Taxa
Slender, usually brownish insects that may have wings (males) or be wingless (some males and all females); body of male flattened; body of female and immature more cylindrical; tarsi 3-segmented; basal segment of front tarsus greatly enlarged for producing silk from hollow hairs issuing on the basal and middle segments; cerci 2-segmented (but left cercus of some males 1-segmented). Females of Embiidina (formerly Embioptera) are notoriously difficult to identify since they lack wings or full development of other normal adult features. They sort of all look pretty similar.

BIOLOGY
Nymphs require moving water for development There is a marked seasonal succession in the emergence of stoneflies, particularly in the northern hemisphere.
Food
Depending upon the suborder the Plecopotera are either vegetarian or carnivorous.
Habitat
Well-oxygenated water is required for the Plecoptera. Water temperature controls development and emergence. Streams with marked temperature changes during the seasons usually display a distinctive sequence of emergence of various species. Some stoneflies occur only in large streams; some are found solely in small streams; still others frequent a wide range of stream sizes. Nymphs occur primarily under stones in cool unpolluted streams. Some species occur along rocky shores of cold lakes, in cracks of submerged logs, and debris that accumulates around stones, branches, and water diversion grills. In spring and summer adults may be found resting on stones and logs in the water, or on leaves and trunks of trees and shrubs near water; winter stoneflies are often attracted to concrete bridges over streams, and some species are commonly found on snow or resting on fence posts during the warmer days of late winter.
Importance
The presence of plecopterans are indicators of good water quality and healthy ecosystems, as they cannot tolerate water pollution
Range
Mostly the cooler, temperate parts of the world.
Distribution
Worldwide
Diversity
SF Bay Area: 3 Suborders are known: Nemouroidea, Perloidea and Pteronarcyoidea. America, north of Mexico: More than 670 species in more than 100 genera and 9 families. Worldwide: More than 3,400 spcies in about 300 genera and 18 families.
Active Period
Adults can be collected every month of the year in California.
Importance
The presence of plecopterans are indicators of good water quality and healthy ecosystems, as they cannot tolerate water pollution
Development
Eggs: Females may deposit eggs over water while flying. Some species crawl to the water edge to deposit eggs. Eggs may be laid once or several times a year. Numbers of eggs is known to exceed 1,000. Eggs are generally spherical with a sticky coating which, when moistened, allows them to adhere to the substrate. Nymphs: In California, nymphs are not well known, but those in the midwest are. They occur in waters with a gravel bottom, but some species are found where the substrate is chiefly detritus.

CREDITS
Photographer
Eddie Dunbar
Insect Sciences Museum of California

References
Order Plecoptera - Stoneflies. (http://bugguide.net/node/view/76). Accessed March 12, 2016. .
ITIS.
Plecoptera (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plecoptera)
Bulletin of the California Insect Survey. Volume 6, No. 6. The Stoneflies (Plecoptera) of California. Stanley G. Jewett, Jr. (U.S. Bureau of Commercia1 Fisheries, Portland, Oregon). University of California Press. Berkeley and Los Angeles. 1960.


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