Caddisfly found in the Snow: Snow Sedge perhaps

Winter Critters
December 30, 2009
I took a walk in the woods this month in western New York and found many little critters on top of the snow. I would appreciate any help you might be able to give in identifying. The trails are on a 600-acre wetland preserve and most of the pictures were taken in mixed woods of pine, hemlock, cherry, maple, oak, etc. that surround a very slow-moving marshy pond.
All of the pictures can be found on my blog (which links to bigger versions on Flickr):
There were some spiders, too… Can you help with them?
Thanks in advance for your help!
Jennifer Schlick
Wetland preserve, western New York State on Dec 22, 2009


Hi again Jennifer,
Your third image is of a Caddisfly, but we don’t want to try to identify it any further than the order Trichoptera, or possibly the Northern Caddisfly family Limnephilidae.  We did find a reference on a fishing website to Winter Caddisflies in the genus Psychoglypha that are called Snow Sedges. also has this comment posted:  “Dr. George Roemhild explained to me how he finds these winter caddisflies in February and March: ‘They crawl up on the snowbanks, but when the sun hits their dark wings they melt down out of sight. That’s how I collect them, by walking along looking for holes in the snow.'” We also found a reference to Snow Sedge on the Flyfishing Entomology website, our new favorite etymology reference page.  Your second image, the caterpillar, is some species of Cutworm.

Wow.  You’re my hero.  thanks a billion.  Now I’m going to have to write a blog post about the wonderful folks over at What’s that Bug!!!

Here’s my blog post:
Thanks again!

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