Three boat-shaped pieces

Norman E. HickinAfrican Notebook, The notes of a biologist in East Africa, Londres, The Scientific Book Club, 1969, pp. 21-23.

My new larvae enthralled me to such an extent that when I had collected about half a dozen I prevailed upon my colleague, Philip, to pack up immediately and to rush us back to the laboratories of the East african Fisheries Research Organisation, where in anticipation, I had installed some aquaria with oxygenating apparatus. When the pieces of leaf commence to walk about the floor of the aquaria I started to breathe again. Two larvae passed through the pupal state and emerged as adults before I started back for England…..


I found three differents sorts of caddis larvae which were similar in that they all inhabited cases and, by means of their heavily-fringed third pair of legs, they were able to swim about quite easily, case and all ! One sort made its case of three boat-shaped pieces cut from grass floating on the water, sharp ends at the rear. Another constructed its abode from a large number of small bits of twig and other vegetable debris applied transversely so that it looked rather like a small hedgehog shooting about in the water. The other species used pieces of hollow stems of grass or reed of suitable size.