Species profile: Agrypnia obsoleta

October 19, 2015

Agrypnia obsoleta (Hagen, 1864)

Agrypnia obsoleta is one of eight members of the Family Phryganeidae found in Ireland, and one of three representatives of the genus. It is a species whose larvae can be found in the littoral zone of lakes and ponds, having a strong preference for standing water. Its substratum preference includes mud, plants, particulate organic matter and woody debris. Agrypnia obsoleta has a rather distinctive case, made of short lengths of plant material in something of a spiral pattern. The species shows a preference for acid waters.

Agrypnia obsoleta has a univoltine reproductive cycle (one generation per year) and lives longer than one year. Its feeding ecology is mainly predatory, with some grazing/scraping and gathering of fine particulate organic matter (FPOM).

Characteristic features of the larva of Agrypnia obsoleta include the largely unsclerotized mesodorsum and metadorsum, the presence of lateral and dorsal protuberances on the 1st abdominal segment, the strongly banded head with the side bands meeting at the back of the head and running forward as far as the jaws, the presence of a prosternite, a contiguous black band across the anterior margin of the pronotum and the longitudinal arrangement of the combs on the coxa of the 2nd leg.

Adults of Agrypnia obsoleta can be found on the wing from July to October.

Records of Agrypnia obsoleta on the National Biodiversity Data Centre mapping system can be found here.

Agrypnia obsoleta


Barnard, P. and Ross, E. (2012) The Adult Trichoptera (Caddisflies) of Britain and Ireland. RES Handbook Volume 1, Part 17.

Graf, W., Murphy, J., Dahl, J., Zamora-Muñoz, C. and López-Rodríguez, M.J. (2008) Distribution and Ecological Preferences of European Freshwater Species. Volume 1: Trichoptera. Astrid Schmidt-Kloiber & Daniel Hering (eds). Pensoft, Sofia-Moscow.

O’Connor, J.P. (2015) A Catalogue and Atlas of the Caddisflies (Trichoptera) of Ireland. Occasional Publication of the Irish Biogeographical Society, No. 11.

Wallace, I.D., Wallace, B. and Philipson, G.N. (2003) Keys to the Case-bearing Caddis Larvae of Britain and Ireland. Scientific Publication of the Freshwater Biological Association No. 61.

Last updated: 05/06/2018


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