Lou2smith's picture

Stonefly larva?

Observed: 29th April 2010 By: Lou2smithLou2smith’s reputation in InvertebratesLou2smith’s reputation in InvertebratesLou2smith’s reputation in Invertebrates
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tweeter's picture

Have you considered it being

Have you considered it being a damselfly larva that has lost it's middle 'tail' ?

It looks like the larva has 3 parts to its thorax - where its legs are attached and that is carachteristic of damselfly larvae. Also the head, with its two large eyes, look much more like damselfly than stonefly.


Matt Smith's picture

Damselfly or Stonefly ?

At first glance I can see why this could be taken for a stonefly nymph as it appears to have only 2 "tails". It is actually, as has been suggested, a damselfly nymph that has lost the middle gill at the rear. The clues are in the antennae and "tails". Damselflies have only 6 or 7 antennal segments and a one-piece lamellae making up the "tail", in Stoneflies both the antennae and "tail" are multi-segmented, with usually 10 or more segments in each.

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RoyW's picture

Specific ID

This is certainly a damselfly larvae (or nymph - either term can be used) for the reasons already given.
It would be preferable not to base an ID to species level on a single photograph, but the larvae of the Large Red have a fairly distinctive head shape (almost rectangular with a fairly straight rear edge), so I am reasonably certain that the photo shows this species. Typically there is also a dark 'X' mark on the caudal lamellae (when viewed from the side), but this feature can vary.