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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
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    South of England
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    Question Help please: Strange wrigglers in RMI sample this week

    A marginal sample produced about a dozen larvae about 6mm long, thin but clearly segmented so that they actually appeared black and white banded. They were not target species for our sampling and none were kept, when 'disturbed' they swam by thrashing into u-shapes left and right. Couldn't see any body appendages with my aging eyesight but definitely not mosquito or midge larvae, and they repeatedly came back to the surface of the sample tray, suggesting that they breathed air. I haven't been able to see anything on-line to suggest what they were, can anyone suggest?
    <")))><

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Sheffield
    Posts
    6,104

    Default Re: Help please: Strange wrigglers in RMI sample this week

    There are many species of midge and what you describe is similar to the ones I find in my rain butts, I net them out with a fine sieve and feed them to the Rudd in the pond. The pupae when they ascend to hatch are pale grey, almost transparent, and it is indeed a small midge that hatches, and they bite, but don't expect anyone but an experienced entomologist to name them.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Penrith, Cumbria
    Posts
    2,236

    Default Re: Help please: Strange wrigglers in RMI sample this week

    Hi', The characteristic motion of midge larvae, bloodworms, is sort of lashing of the body. Pupae do it, too, but usually less vigorously, or so it appears to me when I watch them in my water butts or garden pond. BTW, bloodworms are not all red as the common name suggests: they can be red, grey, brown, green, oiive or black, depending on the species. The biggest I have ever seen,'Jumbo pupae', were in one of the lakes at Westland, Kirkpatrick Fleming --they were about 13 or 14mm. I believe pupae of this size are found in the north-western states of the USA, the UK and South Africa: at least that is what I learned from one of my old Video tapes, about 25 years ago. Hope that helps a bit. jadaTC
    We walk on the clay of the river bank of life only once. Try to leave a good impression. Hidden Content Hidden Content
    TC 16/7/2013

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