Currently viewing the category: "Midges"

Mosquito Project
Location: Grand Rapids, MI
May 1, 2012
Hey Daniel,  You guys were so interested by it last year, I figured I’d just drop u a quick email letting you know that I’m doing my mosquito project again this year. Just started it last week. I’m actually going to be buying a few small fish soon so I’m hoping to be able to raise them for fish food as well. Just wanted to share with someone who shares my passion for bugs!!!
I knew what it was last yr when I did my mosquito project but I forgot what it is. I also didn’t know it goes thru a process much like that of a mosquito until I saw this lil guy with the white beard. 🙂
Later! -Amanda Gorman


Hi Amanda,
The aquatic creatures in your photos are Bloodworms: a larva and a pupa.  Bloodworms are the immature phases of Midges in the genus Chironomus.  Here is a matching photo from BugGuide.  According to BugGuide:  “Larvae are usually found in sediments, and can occur in highly polluted conditions or in relatively clean water. Larvae of the Ch. decorus group, Ch. riparius and Ch. stigmaterus are most often associated with high nutrient/low oxygen conditions.”  Fish will relish Bloodworms as much as they do Mosquito Larvae.

Bloodworm Pupa


Circle of Life
Location: Contra Costa County, CA
October 13, 2011 9:17 pm
Saw this guy flipping around on a leaf while hiking along the edge of a marsh. Didn’t even see the ant until I looked at the picture on my camera. I wasn’t able to stick around to see who won, but I know those ants aggressively defend their eucalyptus.
Signature: Fel

MIdge and Ant relationship

Dear Fel,
We cannot imagine what the Ant is doing to the Midge.  You actually witnessed it, so you think it looked like a battle.  We sense that this is some symbiotic relationship or possibly a one sided relationship.  Perhaps this became Phoresy after the camera stopped running. 

The midge was flipping around like he was trying to get away but the ant had a good grip on him. Those eucalyptus have some sort of psyllid insect, tortoise beetles (fast little buggers), and those ants. If you touch the leaves, the ants come running so I assumed the ant was defending his territory.

Ghost Midge?
Location: Granite Lake, Trinity Alps Wilderness, CA
August 2, 2011 12:32 pm
At Granite Lake in the Trinity Alps Wilderness we heard a scary sound of millions of bugs… worried it was mosquitoes but it was these little guys. (There were also lots of mosquitoes.) Some kind of midge I’m sure, but what kind?
Signature: -Ben

Male Midge

Hi Ben,
We agree that this is a Midge, and we will also say with confidence that it is a male Midge based on the antennae, but we have to stop short of trying to take the identification any further.  We do not have the necessary skills or resources to distinguish between species of Midges.

Moth at Waldo Lake, Oregon
Location: Waldo Lake, Central Cascades, Oregon
August 1, 2011 10:38 pm
It looked more like a fly or mosquito but up close I’d say it’s a moth. Any idea what kind of moth?
Signature: Richard

Unknown Male Midge

Hi Richard,
Your initial instinct was correct.  This is not a moth, despite its feathery antennae.  It is a Midge, a group of Flies closely classified with Mosquitoes.  There are Biting Midges and those that do not bite, but alas, we have had no luck identifying the species you submitted.  We can tell you that it is a male based on the feathery antennae.  You can try searching through the insects posted to BugGuide under the infraorder Culicomorpha and you might have better luck than we have had.

Male Midge – Chironomidae
Location: Utah, 6,000 feet
March 5, 2011 11:29 am
I see several insects in the winter, as the weather begins to warm up. On this walk I took, I found several of these little black, fuzzy antenna insects. I perused your site, as well as another site that talks about insects, and think I’ve identified it as a Male non-biting Midge.
This was taken in Utah, at about 6,000 ft. on March 4.
Signature: Wendy

Snow Midge

Hi Wendy,
Your identification is correct.  We are pleased to hear that you are using internet resources to research your identification requests and that our site was a component of your research.  Though we have photos of Midges on our website, your photo is the first Snow Midge we have received.  BugGuide has an excellent image of a male Snow Midge that matches your image.  We also found a very nice Nature Post on Snow Midges on the Abundant Nature website.

Flying Insect
Taylor, MI (southeast MI)
August 31, 2010 10:40 pm
This is probably a pretty boring insect, but what in the world is this. They were hanging out by the hundreds on a window of a friend of mine?


Hi cgp,
We are not going to try to pretend we know more than what our limited understanding includes when it comes to insect identification.  These are members of the order Diptera which includes flies and mosquitoes.  They are some small gnats or midges, but we have no idea what family much less genus or species.  That would take a true expert in the area, known as a dipterist.  We can tell you that this is a pair, and the individual with the arrow pointing at him is the male.  Many male flies have highly developed antennae which are sensory organs, presumably to help them locate females.  Hopefully one of our readers will be able to provide a more specific identification.  We just noticed your email contained a second contact with additional information.

Apparently this is a chiromid midge.
— cgp

Dear cgp,
Thanks for providing us with a followup that supports our original vague identification.  We are linking to the BugGuide information page on the Chironomid Midges in the family Chironomidae.