Elisa Angrisano, » Trichoptera « , in Grzimek’s Animal Life Encyclopedia, second edition, vol. 3, Insects, New York, Thomson Gale, 2005.
Significance to humans
Some legends in central Japan were based on the doll-like cases of the genus Goera; these legends revolved around a young girl offered as a sacrifice. Beginning in the 1980s, the visual artist Hubert Duprat utilized caddisflies to create unique sculptural forms. He first removed larvae from their natural habitat, and then he provided the larvae with precious materials, prompting the caddisflies to construct « jeweled » cocoons. Some South American natives use larval cases as earrings and as beads for necklaces.
Salmon and other fishes are attracted by caddisfly larvae, pupae, and adults, leading to the creation of a series of sophisticated patterns for fly-fishing that imitate the different stages of species from different regions.
Some species gnaw on wood structures in the water, while other species cause damage to rice fields and to aquatic ornamental and commercial plants. Adults are often attracted to lights, where thousands of them may appear simultaneously and cause damage to air conditioners and other devices. Caddiflies also may reduce visibility when they lay eggs on roads; apparently they confuse the shine of roads at night with water. The cementing substance of the eggs and eggs broken by tires can be transformed into a gelatin that is hazardous for drivers.