VCSU Macro-Invertabrate Lab
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Order Diptera - Family Chironomidae - Sub Family Chironominae - The Midges
Distinguishing characteristics - Midge larvae have a distinct, sclerotized head that is separated from the thorax (Fig. B). The body has a pair of prolegs located on the prothorax and a pair of terminal prolegs (Figs. B & C) with the thorax and abdomen about equal in diameter (Fig D), except in the case of some mature larvae which have expanded thoracic segments.

Tolerance Value - 6

Feeding Group - Collector

Notes - The midges are one of the most diverse and common groups of aquatic Diptera larvae. While they are generally thought of as being indicators of poor water quality, this is not necessarily true for all species. Many build cases in which they overwinter as larvae. They are found in essentially all types of aquatic habitats. They eat a variety of food depending on the specific species, some are predators, some are parasitic, and some herbivorous. The size of the midge larvae at maturity is 2-20 mm.

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