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Thread: Mystery aquatic bug

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    Lucky Greenhorn Lil Stinkpot's Avatar
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    Mystery aquatic bug

    I found an interesting critter today. I won't say from who I got it, just in case it's a pest. I doubt it, though.

    Alas, it is effectively microscopic, and I cannot take a picture of it; I haven't the necessary tools. (I wish I did!)

    I tried to look it up, but Google just brought up aphids on exposed water lilies, mayflies, and caddie bugs. Nothing that matches mine.

    I found it clinging to the stem of an aquatic CP, when I took a sprig to work to ogle under the microscope. At 20x, I can see all the trigger hairs, spines, floats, other neat things. The bug looks almost exactly like a brown, armored, thick-shelled aphid, complete with a sucking proboscis. It was quite at home in the water, and even found the time to molt once. If I can get it to hold still long enough, and if my calipers don't scare it off, I can measure it later. For now... It is between .020" and .030", about the size of a Utric. trap. I hope it doesn't get eaten by what else is in there, big enough to eat it for sure.

    If I have missed any details that may be helpful, ask. I remember it's image well.
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    could be a daphnia ?

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    kulamauiman's Avatar
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    Lucky Greenhorn Lil Stinkpot's Avatar
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    Nope, neither of those. It really does look like an aphid-- six legs, two antennae, one proboscis, even two rear appendages (forgot what they're called). But it clearly has a thicker shell, not like the easily smooshed aphid.
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    Peatmoss's Avatar
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    I doubt it but, it could be an aquatic aphid, apparently those are a thing:

    http://agrilife.org/citybugs/2011/08/aquatic-aphids/
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    Mr. veitchii mikefallen13's Avatar
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    Aquatic aphids are definently real, and I've had alot of problems with them! They destroyed multiple leaves/stems/flowers on my waterlilies and lotuses last season, does anybody on here know how to kill them? It might be helpful to know just in case they decide to take residence in my plants again this year.
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    Grow Pitcher Plants! DroseraBug's Avatar
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    There are also aquatic/semi-aquatic weevils since you mentioned distinct proboscis. Although that size is small. There are also several different aquatic Hemipterans (True Bug Order and some are tiny) that would have a distinct proboscis. Would need a photo or drawing.
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    Lucky Greenhorn Lil Stinkpot's Avatar
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    I have never heard of aquatic aphids. It could be.

    I presume I'll never know, or at least, won't know until I get a good microscope, with a way to take pictures.

    Not weevils. Like true bugs, with the down-ward pointing mouth parts. Exactly. Like. An aphid. Just under water, with no "scuba gear" (trapped air bubbles, fancy snorkel tubes, etc.)

    Wait until tomorrow, when I can sketch the other critter I saw today. This one's weird.









    Dangit! I need a microscope already.
    If you shake a rain stick, you get rain. I need a hamata stick.
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