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Ephemeroptera: Ephemerellidae of Gunnison County, Colorado

Ephemerella aurivillii

(Bengtsson, 1908)
Updated 2 Mar 2022
TSN 101255

Locations Collected

The animal is distributed holarctically or around the northern and temperate portions of the Earth. Locally larvae are found in Ohio Creek.

Good Links

On this website:
Ephemerella Introduction
Ephemerellidae Introduction

Other Websites:
Photos, Map, Museum specimens, DNA - Barcodinglife.org

Photos - from Troutnut.com and Bugguide.net


Alexander,LC; Delion,M; Hawthorne,DJ; Lamp,WO and Funk,DH 2009 Mitochondrial lineages and DNA barcoding of closely related species in the mayfly genus Ephemerella (Ephemeroptera: Ephemerellidae). Journal of the North American Benthological Society, 28(3) 584-595. PDF
     Abstract: "We compared genetic lineages in the mayfly genus Ephemerella (Ephemeroptera: Ephemerellidae) identified from mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) to current taxonomy in 9 morphological taxa, including 2 geographically widespread species, Ephemerella invaria ( = E. inconstans, E. rotunda, E. floripara) and Ephemerella dorothea ( = E. infrequens). Maximum likelihood and parsimony analyses of the mtDNA sequences placed E. inconstans and E. invaria in a well-supported clade; however, mean Kimura 2-parameter genetic distance between the lineages was high (5.2%) relative to distance within lineages (1.3%). The phylogenetic relationships of synonyms E. rotunda and E. floripara were not resolved, but estimates of mean genetic distance to E. invaria were high for both (8.5% and 11.6%, respectively). Populations of E. dorothea were grouped in 2 well-supported clades (12.9% mean divergence) that did not include the synonym E. infrequens (20.9% mean divergence, based on a single sample). A large genetic distance (18.6%) also was found between eastern and western populations of Ephemerella excrucians. Western samples of Ephemerella aurivillii were so genetically distant from all other lineages (32.2%) that doubt about its congeneric status is raised. mtDNA data have been useful for identifying genetic lineages in Ephemerella, but our results do not support use of cytochrome oxidase I (COI) as a DNA barcode to identify species in this genus because we also found evidence of incomplete mtDNA lineage sorting in this gene. Use of the barcoding gene rediscovered some old taxonomic problems in Ephemerella, a result that emphasizes the importance of completing empirical systematic description of species before using single-character systems for identification."

Allen RK. 1968 New species and records of Ephemerella (Ephemerella) in western North America (Ephemeroptera: Ephemerellidae). Journal of the Kansas Entomological Society 41(4):557-567 PDF
     Has descriptions, distributions, illustrations and keys for adults and larvae of the Ephemerella known in the 1960's. E. aurivilli is included. However, the similar species E. apopsis is not discussed. E. apopsis is present in Colorado and may be in the upper Gunnison Basin.

Bengtsson,S 1908 Berättelse öfver en resa i entomologiskt syfte til mellersta Sverige Sommaren 1907. K. Svenska Vetenskapsakad. Årsbok 6: 237-46. PDF
     Described as Chitonophora aurivillii.

Bengtsson,S 1930 Kritische Bemerkungen über einige Nordische Ephemeropteren, nebst Beschreibung neuer Larven. Acta Universitatis Lundensis. 2(2) 1-27. PDF

Kjӕrstad,G; Webb,JM and Ekrem,T, 2012 A review of the Ephemeroptera of Finnmark–DNA barcodes identify Holarctic relations. Norwegian Journal of Entomology, 59(2), pp.182-195. PDF

Larsen R. 1968 The life cycle of Ephemeroptera in a lower part of Aurland River in Sogn and Fjordane, Western Norway. Norsk entomologisk tidsskrift 15(1):49-59. Abstract

McCafferty,WP; Durfee,RS; Kondratieff,BC 1993 Colorado mayflies (Ephemeroptera): an annotated inventory. Southwestern Naturalist 38 3, 252-274. PDF
     Quote from page 265: " *Ephemerella aurivilii (Bengtsson) -PERC: Routt Co., Walton Cr., at Hwy 40, 6 mi. W of Rabbit Ears Pass, VIII-23-1967, B. R. Oblad (larvae). This is a northern species that has been known from Labrador to Alaska (McCafferty, 1985). Its southernmost distribution would now include Massachusetts, Colorado, and California. It is common in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan (McCafferty, unpubl.), but otherwise has not been generally known from central areas of the United States. Although the larvae of this species are distinct, there remains a very remote possibility that the larvae from Colorado fitting the description of E. aurivillii are the undescribed larvae of E. apopsis. Both species as adults possess deeply forked penes and may be related (McCafferty, 1992b). "

McCafferty,WP and Provonsha, AV The Mayflies of North AmericaSpecies List (Version 8Feb2011)
     Here is the geographic range and synonyms:
Ephemerella aurivillii (Bengtsson), 1908 [CAN:FN,NE,NW;USA:FN,NE,NW,SW]
    * Chitonophora aurivillii Bengtsson, 1908 (orig.)
    * Cincticostella ezoensis (Gose), 1980 (syn.)
    * Ephemerella aurivilliusi (Bengtsson), 1908 (spell.)
    * Ephemerella aroni Eaton, 1908 (syn.)
    * Ephemerella aronii Eaton, 1908 (syn.)
    * Ephemerella concinnata Traver, 1934 (syn.)
    * Ephemerella ezoensis Gose, 1980 (syn.)
    * Ephemerella nN Imanishi, 1940 (syn.)
    * Ephemerella norda McDunnough, 1924 (syn.)
    * Ephemerella taeniata Tshernova, 1952 (syn.)
Raddum,G; Fjellheim,A and Velle,G 2008 Increased growth and distribution of Ephemerella aurivillii (Ephemeroptera) after hydropower regulation of the Aurland catchment in Western Norway. River Research and Applications 24:688-697.
     Abstract: "The Aurland watershed has been regulated for hydropower since the establishment of a series of power plants during the period 1970-1983. This resulted in a strong reduction of the flow in the river Vassbygdelvi, the inlet river to lake Vassbygdvatn. In the downstream river Aurland, the flow has varied, but from 2000 the intention has been to simulate pre-regulation winter flow as far as possible. The temperature in the river Vassbygdelvi has increased from about 1500 degree-days per year before regulation to above 2000 degree-days after regulation. In the river Aurland the thermal regime, expressed as degree-days per year, was more or less unchanged, but a small reduction in the summer temperature and a corresponding increase during other periods was observed. The mayfly Ephemerella aurivillii (Bengtsson) was not recorded in Vassbygdelvi prior to regulation, but became abundant in the river after. Full-grown larvae were recorded 1-2 months earlier in the river Vassbygdelvi than in the river Aurland after regulation. E. aurivillii has a 1-year life cycle with imagos present in June-August. Young larvae occurred from June to early September. It is concluded that larvae of E. aurivillii could not complete their life cycle within 1 year before regulation in the river Vassbygdelvi, due to low temperature. The study demonstrates how temperature can regulate the distribution of a species with a strict 1-year life cycle. "

White,MM and Licthwardt,RW 2004 Fungal symbionts (Harpellales) in Norwegian aquatic insect larvae. Mycologia, 96(4):891-910. PDF
     The authors describe a new fungal symbiont Ephemerellomyces aquilonius in nymphs of Ephemerella aurivillii from Norway. Quote from the discussion: "Trichomycetes were common in Norway, and many were found that added new species or extended the hosts and ranges of previously known species, with no major departures from expected morphologies. However, Ephemerellomyces aquilonius had a novel stage of trichospore development. The source of the trichospores that attach to and germinate on the hindgut cuticle of this new genus and species is not known (FIGS. 4-6). They might be trichospores that had been ingested by the larvae or ones that were produced by established thalli within the gut. The uniqueness of their development is that the germination process yields a cell that functions as a generative cell to produce a single trichospore. Replication of thalli within the gut by internally produced spores is common in Eccrinales but rare in Harpellales. In the latter order, examples are Graminella spp. from Baetidae (Ephemeroptera), where specialized detachable branches break off from thalli, attach to the cuticle and grow into sporulating thalli (see illustrations in Lichtwardt and Moss 1981 or Lichtwardt and Arenas 1996); and in the monotypic Western Australian genus Allantomyces from Caenidae (Ephemeroptera), specialized allantoid cells are produced on branchlets, detach and produce new thalli in the same gut (Williams and Lichtwardt 1993). But in none of the species of these two genera do the vegetative propagules resemble the apparent trichospore attachment and germination in E. aquilonius."

Brown,WS 2010 Ephemeroptera of Gunnison County, Colorado