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Please ID  - Hexagenia limbata

Please ID - Hexagenia limbata
Troy, Lincoln County, Missouri, USA
August 12, 2008
Found on our car while filing up gas. Moved it into the container for pictures - didn't move much, it keeps 2 front antenas(?) together a lot.

Images of this individual: tag all
Please ID  - Hexagenia limbata Please ID  - Hexagenia limbata

That would be a Hexagenia female subimago, likely H. limbata. Rather than being antennae, those are actually the fore legs. Have never heard a good explanation, but Hexagenia are often seen with their fore legs extended in that manner.

thanks, what is it doing just
thanks, what is it doing just sitting on my car though?

What it was doing?
It was likely just resting in preparation for its final molt into a sexually mature winged mayfly. Mayflies are unique in the insect world in that they have two winged life stages, the subimago (dun) and the imago (spinner). Depending on species, the subimago stage can last for only a few minutes to nearly a week, but in most cases lasts only a single day.

Thanks, facinating.
Thanks, facinating.

Is your car black? Red? Lots of metal in the paint?
Those are all big attractors. Some people contend that such finishes look like water to the insect. Who knows for sure?

I've seen only one mayfly in the past thirty years, and it was on my car - a mica red RX-8 that generated so much hot bug action that I called it The Mazda Theatre for Performing Insects.

Yes, my car is gold metalic a
Yes, my car is gold metalic and there were lots of other smaller bugs on the roof of the car that time too but this mayfly sure is different, thanks.

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