Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada

Family Mesoveliidae - Water Treaders

5th instar - Mesovelia Juvenile Water Strider? - Mesovelia tiny bug on duckweed - Mesovelia Plant Bug - Mesovelia mulsanti Unknown Gerridae - Mesovelia Mesovelia mulsanti Plant insect  - Mesovelia Mesovelia
Classification
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Hemiptera (True Bugs, Cicadas, Hoppers, Aphids and Allies)
Suborder Heteroptera (True Bugs)
Infraorder Gerromorpha (Semiaquatic Bugs)
Family Mesoveliidae (Water Treaders)
Other Common Names
Pond Threaders, Pondweed Bugs
Explanation of Names
Mesoveliidae Douglas & Scott 1867
Numbers
3 spp. in a single genus in our area, ~50 spp. in 12 genera worldwide(1)
Size
our spp. 1.8-4 mm(2), 1.2-4.2 mm worldwide(1)
Identification
winged forms with ocelli, wingless forms without ocelli(2)
Small, slender, usually greenish or yellowish. Only anterior basal part of forewing thickened, clavus membraneous, membrane veinless. Antennae long, slender, 4-segmented. Beak slender, 3-segmented, 3rd segment long. Tarsi 3-segmented, tarsomere 1 minute.(3)
Habitat
on aquatic vegetation or running on water surface; fairly common around ponds(3); almost always present on Lemna mats and on lily pads(2), also in forest leaf litter, damp moss, seeping rock faces(1)
Food
small aquatic organisms found on water surface(3)
Remarks
basal family of the group (fossils known from late Jurassic)(4)
Works Cited
1.Biodiversity of the Heteroptera
Henry T.J. 2009. In: Foottit R.G., Adler P.H., eds. Insect biodiversity: Science and society. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell: 223-263.
2.Identification manual for the aquatic and semi-aquatic Heteroptera of Florida
Epler J.H. 2006. FL Dept. Env. Prot., Tallahassee, FL. 186 pp.
3.A Field Guide to Insects
Richard E. White, Donald J. Borror, Roger Tory Peterson. 1998. Houghton Mifflin Co.
4.Evolution of the Insects
David Grimaldi and Michael S. Engel. 2005.