Athens Water Festival 2017

Emily showing off the caddisfly cases to visitors

Last Saturday, EcoReach volunteered once again at the Athens-Clarke County’s annual Athens Water Festival. This year’s theme was “Be a Sewer Hero” and the EcoReach booth was titled “The Amazing Underwater Tape of the Caddisfly, a true superhero of the stream”.

Caddisflies (Order: Trichoptera) are important freshwater insects that contribute to aquatic ecosystems by feeding on detritus and leaf litter as larvae, existing as prey for other organisms, and also functioning as indicators of good stream water quality. Additionally, caddisflies are incredible architects. Many larvae will build cases using salivary secretions that act as an underwater double-stick tape so that materials such as wood, rocks, or shells can attach and form a casing around their bodies. These cases provide protection and camouflage from stream debris and predators.

EcoReach volunteers had caddisfly cases that were recently collected from Cowetta, GA, to show the visitors, along with many preserved caddisflies and other aquatic insects that can be found throughout streams in Georgia. To learn more about the Amazing Underwater Tape of Caddisflies, please visit this PBS video that our volunteers also played during the festival.

Check out our photos below!

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