Mayfly

Mayfly

Mayfly

Size: Varies, but most species have a body ¾- to 1-inch in length.
 
Color: Varies from pale white to brown to black. Some have bright streaks of yellow or another color.

About the Mayfly

Mayflies are also known as shadflies or lakeflies. With four wings, a mayfly has three long hair-like appendages extending from the abdomen that are characteristic of these insects. At rest, adult mayflies hold their two pair of large membranous wings folded vertically above their abdomens. Adults live only a short time, long enough to mate and lay eggs. They do not feed. Eggs are deposited in water and the nymphs live at the bottom of the stream, pond and lake where they feed on small aquatic plants, animals and organic material. 

Typically, mayflies produce but one generation per year and the adults of a particular species emerge in large numbers at the same time. At times, the emerging species become massive swarms where mayflies literally cover the ground in piles after mating. Adults become structural pests when they are attracted to lights at night, sometimes in tremendous numbers.
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