Plecoptera for the Novice Entomologist and Trout Fisherman

Catch the wave. In this case, imagine you have just arrived at a bubbling brook and are seeking the first sign of an insect rising from the water. You see a movement. EXCITEMENT!! Then panic! What is it, mayfly dun, caddis or a stonefly? You have to catch some, but they are just out of reach. You splash through the water after the elusive insect that any self-respecting trout would want for a meal. You finally catch the almost nondescript creature. It proves to be the little red stonefly, Strophopteryx fasciata.

If you are concerned about scientific names don’t be alarmed. Just think back to your days of high school biology- Kingdom, Phylum, Class, Order, Family, Genus, and species. Stoneflies belong to the Animal Kingdom, Phylum Arthropoda, Class Insecta, Order Plecoptera. Are you with me so far? The Family of the little brown stonefly is Taeniopterygidae.

For the trout fisherman tying flies of the little brown stonefly, use yellow thread, short dark brown hackle fibers for the tail, peacock herl for the body, dark brown deer hair for the wings on a 12-14 hook size.

Stoneflies provide a winter activity for the aquatic entomologist - a stop on a concrete bridge on a sunny winter day will inevitably produce some stoneflies in the family Capniidae. In the summer, the little green stonefly, Alloperla imbecilla in the family Chloroperlidae, can be seen fluttering above swift riffles. At twilight look for the yellow sally, Isoperla bilineata, a classic eastern species, emerging from the riffles of swift rivers. The needle fly, Leuctra grandis, can be found in limestone streams in a wide range of water quality streams.

Stoneflies are poor fliers and are often found resting on objects along the shores of streams or rocky, wave-swept shoals of lakes. Some species are decidedly nocturnal. Each species is rather definite in time of its appearance in the adult stage. The nymphs are strictly aquatic. Coloration is yellow, tan, brown or blackish. Many species are quite specific in their ecological preferences.

Family Capniidae (Snowflies)
  • Aurora Snowfly - Allocapnia aurora
  • Peculiar Snowfly - Allocapnia curiosa
  • Evansville Snowfly - Allocapnia frisoni
  • Common Snowfly - Allocapnia granulata
  • Stonyfork Snowfly - Allocapnia harperi
  • Two-knobbed Snowfly - Allocapnia maria
  • Brook Snowfly - Allocapnia nivicola
  • St. Lawrence Snowfly - Allocapnia pechumani
  • Pygmy Snowfly - Allocapnia pygmaea
  • Eastern Snowfly - Allocapnia recta
  • Midwest Snowfly - Allocapnia rickeri
  • Spatulate Snowfly - Allocapnia simmonsi
  • Shortwing Snowfly - Allocapnia vivipara
  • Pristine Snowfly - Allocapnia wrayi
  • Ash Snowfly - Allocapnia zola
  • Angulate Snowfly - Paracapnia angulata
Family Chloroperlidae - Chloroperlidae (Sallfly)
  • Aracoma Sallfly - Alloperla aracoma
  • Atlantic Sallfly - Alloperla atlantica
  • Ozark Sallfly - Alloperla caudata
  • Triangular Sallfly - Alloperla chloris
  • Duckhead Sallfly - Alloperla concolor
  • Ohio Sallfly (Little Green Stonefly) - Alloperla imbecilla
  • Woodlands Sallfly - Alloperla petasata
  • Appalachian Sallfly - Alloperla usa
  • Scotia Sallfly - Alloperla vostoki
  • Least Sallfly - Haploperla brevis
  • Vermont Sallfly - Rasvena terna
  • York Sallfly - Suwallia marginata
  • Northeastern Sallfly - suwallia naica
  • Ontario Sallfly - Sweltsa onkos
  • Curved Sallfly - Sweltsa lateralis
Family Chloroperlidae - Paraperlinae (Sallflies)
  • Gaspe Sallfly - Utaperla gaspesiana
Family Leuctridae (Needleflies)
  • Anakeesta Needlefly - Leuctra alexanderi
  • Carolina Needlefly - Leuctra carolinensis
  • Atlantic Needlefly - Leuctra duplicata
  • Eastern Needlefly - Leuctra ferruginea
  • Grand Needlefly (Needlefly) - Leuctra grandis
  • Northeastern Needlefly - Leuctra maria
  • Brook Needlefly - Leuctra sibleyi
  • Broad-lobed Needlefly - Leuctra tenella
  • Narrow-lobed Needlefly - Leuctra tenuis
  • Truncate Needlefly - Leuctra truncata
  • Variable Needlefly - Leuctra variabilis
  • Appalachian Needlefly - Paraleuctra sara
Family Leuctridae – Magaleuctrinae (Needleflies)
  • Shenandoah Needlefly - Megaleuctra flinti
Family Nemouridae - Amphinemurinae (Forestflies)
  • Appalachian Forestfly - Amphinemura appalachia
  • Eastern Forestfly - Amphinemura delosa
  • Lovely Forestfly - Amphinemura linda
  • Little Black Forestfly - Amphinemura nigritta
  • Spiked Forestfly - Amphinemura wui
Family Nemouridae – Nemourinae (Forestflies)
  • Whitetailed Forestfly - Ostrocerca albidipennis
  • Notched Forestfly - Ostrocerca complexa
  • Bent Forestfly - Ostrocerca prolongata
  • Truncate Forestfly - Ostrocerca truncata
  • Boreal Forestfly - Paranemoura perfecta
  • Longhorn Forestfly - Prostoia similis
  • Carolina Forestfly - Soyedina carolinensis
  • Powdermill Forestfly - Soyedina merritti
  • Valley Forestfly - Soyedina vallicularia
  • Vernal Forestfly - Soyedina washingtoni
Family Peltoperlida (Roachflies)
  • Appalachian Roachfly - Peltoperla arcuata
  • Common Roachfly - Tallaperla maria
Family Perlidae - Acroneuriinae (Stones)
  • Common Stone - Acroneuria abnormis
  • Eastern Stone - Acroneuria arenosa
  • Elegant Stone - Acroneuria arida
  • Carolina Stone - Acroneuria carolinensis
  • Constricted Stone - Acroneuria evoluta
  • Illinois Stone - Acroneuria filicis
  • Central Stone - Acroneuria frisoni
  • Boreal Stone (Giant Brown Stonefly) - Acroneuria lycorias
  • Giant Stone - Attaneuria ruralis
  • Yellow Stone - Eccoptura xanthenes
  • Appalachian Stone - Hansonoperla applachia
  • Widespread Stone - Perlesta decipiens
  • Tiny Stone - Perlesta nitida
  • Freckled Stone - Perlesta placida
  • Striped Stone - Perlinella drymo
  • Vernal Stone - Perlinella ephyre
Family Perlidae – Perlinae (Stones)
  • Southern Stone - Agnetina annulipes
  • Northern Stone (Eastern Stonefly) - Agnetina capitata
  • Midwestern Stone - Agnetina flavescens
  • Slippery Stone - Neoperla catharae
  • Atlantic Stone - Neoperla occipitalis
  • Multispine Stone - Neoperla stewarti
  • Coastal Stone - Neoperla clymene
  • Beautiful Stone - Paragnetina immarginata
  • Embossed Stone - Paragnetina media
Family Perlodidae - Isoperlinae (Stripetails)
  • Clio Stripetail - Clioperla clio
  • Two-lined Stripetail (Yellow Sally) - Isoperla bilineata
  • Sable Stripetail - Isoperla dicala
  • Northeastern Stripetail - Isoperla francesca
  • Wisconsin Stripetail - Isoperla frisoni
  • Pale Stripetail - Isoperla holochlora
  • Dark Stripetail - Isoperla lata
  • Midwestern Stripetail - Isoperla marlynia
  • Montane Stripetail - Isoperla montana
  • Ozark Stripetail - Isoperla namata
  • Least Stripetail - Isoperla nana
  • Colorless Stripetail - Isoperla orata
  • Sterling Stripetail - Isoperla richardsoni
  • Transverse Stripetail (Little Brown Stonefly) - Isoperla signata
  • Black Stripetail - Isoperla similis
  • Colorful Stripetail - Isoperla slossonae
  • Boreal Stripetail - Isoperla transmarina
Family Perlodidae - Perlodinae (Springflies)
  • Great lakes Springfly - Cultus decisus decisus
  • Spiny Springfly - Cultus verticalis
  • Twolobed Springfly - Diploperla duplicata
  • Robust Springfly - Diploperla robusta
  • Vernal Springfly - Helopicus subvarians
  • Appalachian Springfly - Isogenoides hansoni
  • Olive Springfly - Isogenoides olivaceus
  • Brook Springfly - Malirekus hastatus
  • Iroquois Springfly - Malirekus iroquois
  • Lash Springfly - Remenus bilobatus
  • Frogtown Springfly - Yugus kirchneri
Family Pteronarcyidae (Salmonflies)
  • Knobbed Salmonfly - Pteronarcys biloba
  • Spiny Salmonfly - Pteronarcys comstocki
  • American Salmonfly (Giant Black Stonefly) - Pteronarcys dorsata
  • Midwestern Salmonfly - Pteronarcys pictetii
  • Appalachian Salmonfly - Pteronarcys proteus
  • Carolina Salmonfly - Pteronarcys scotti
Family Taeniopterygidae (Willowflies)
  • Smoky Willowfly - Bolotoperla rossi
  • Dark Willowfly - Oemopteryx contorta
  • Mottled Willowfly (Little Red Stonefly) - Strophopteryx fasciata
  • Atlantic Willowfly - Taenionema atlanticum
Family Taeniopterygidae (Willowflies)
  • Eastern Willowfly - Taeniopteryx burksi
  • Spinyleg Willowfly - Taeniopteryx maura
  • Shortwing Willowfly - Taeniopteryx metequi
  • Boreal Willowfly (Early Brown Stonefly) - Taeniopteryx nivalis
  • Hooked Willowfly - Taeniopteryx parvula
  • Cumberland Willowfly - Taeniopteryx ugola

Citation

From Common Names of Stoneflies (Plecoptera) from the United States and Canada
  • Bill P. Stark, Dept. of Biology, Mississippi College, Clinton, MS 39058
  • Kenneth W. Stewart, Dept. of Biological Sciences, Univ. of North Texas, Denton, TX 76203
  • Stanley W. Szczytko, College of Natural Resources, Univ. of Wisconsin, Stevens Point, WI 54481
  • Richard W. Baumann, Dept. of Zoology, Brigham Young Univ., Provo, UT 84602.
  • Ohio Biological Survey Notes 1:1-18, 1998.