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Trichoptera: Apataniidae of Gunnison County, Colorado

Apatania zonella

(Zetterstedt) 1840
Updated 2 Mar 2022
TSN 115954


Wiggins, 1996 notes that the larvae of all Apatania can be separated from the rest of the Apataniidae (only Allomyia in Gunnison County) by the absence of metanotal sa1 sclerites with the setae in a straight line. However Allomyia gnathos has a very distinctive head shape, once you´ve seen it, you will never confuse these species.

Life History

One of the most interesting things about A. zonella is that most populations are all female. The females are able to reproduce parthenogenetically or without males! This is an advantage for a caddisfly that lives in artic or alpine environments around the world.

Good Links

On this website:
Introduction to the Apataniidae

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

Illustration - from the University of Alberta Entomology Collection
     Has description, habitat information, range and more.


Historically this genus has been discussed as Radema.


Chen,YE 1992 The larva and pupae of Apatania praevolans Morse (Trichoptera: Apataniidae), with a key to described larvae of North American species of Apatania. Aquatic Insects 14 1, 49-55.
     Has a key that separates the Apatania species of North America. Also lists the authors, descriptions and diagnoses for the larvae of Apatania of the world that were described as of the time of this study.

Corbet,PS 1966 Parthenogenesis in caddisflies (Trichoptera). Canadian Journal of Zoology 44, 981-982.
     Quote from page 981: "Throughout its range, Apatania zonella (Zetterstedt) (Apataniidae) is represented wholly or predominantly by females (Lack 1933, Lack 1934, Mosely 1928) which average more than 99% in collections, although copulation in nature has been witnessed (Lack, 1933). At Lake Hazen, Ellesmere Island, Canada (71;° 18´ W., 81° 49´ N.), where females comprise about 96% of active adults, a nulliparous individual in captivity laid 98 eggs, of which 91 hatched. Her receptaculum seminis was empty. The likelihood that this female had exhausted an endowment of sperm on one egg-batch, which nevertheless showed high viability, is extremely small."

Djernæs,M and Sperling,FAH 2012 Exploring a key synapomorphy: correlations between structure and function in the sternum V glands of Trichoptera and Lepidoptera (Insecta). Biological Journal of the Linnean Society, 106: 561-579.

Herrmann,SJ; Ruiter,DE and Unzicker,JD 1986 Distribution and records of Colorado Trichoptera. Southwestern Naturalist 31(4), 421-457.
     Quote from page 439: "Apatania zonella is rare and only found in the highest of alpine lentic habitats." This is the only species of Apatania listed for Colorado. They have A. zonella in the family Limnephilidae.

Lack,D 1933 XXII.—Trichoptera, Lepidoptera, and Coleoptera from Bear Island. The Annals and Magazine of Natural History, 12(68), 205-210.

Lepneva, SG 1966 Fauna SSSR, Rucheiniki, vol.2, no.2. Lichinki i kukolki podotryada tsel'nosh-chupikovykh. Zoologicheskii Institut Akademii Nauk SSSR, n.s. 95 [In Russian. Translated into English as: Fauna of the U.S.S.R.; Trichoptera, vol. 2, no. 2. Larvae and Pupae of Integripalpia. Published by the Israel Program for Scientific Translations, 1971.]
     Describes the larvae of A. zonella among other things.

Nimmo, A 1971 The adult Rhyacophilidae and Limnephilidae (Trichoptera) of Alberta and eastern British Columbia and their post glacial origin. Quaestiones Entomologicae 73: 3-234.

Ruiter,DE; Kondratieff,BC; Lechleitner,RA and Zuellig,RE 2005 An annotated list of the caddisflies (Trichoptera) of Mount Rainier National Park, Washington, USA. Transactions of the American Entomological Society, pp.159-187. PDF
     Abstract: "The caddisflies of Mount Rainier National Park (MRNP), Washington, USA, were surveyed between 1997 and 2004. At least 1,930 specimens from over 250 collections at 163 sites were examined. Based on the current understanding of caddisfly systematics, 108 species were identified. With nine additional species previously reported that we did not confirm, a total of 117 species are now known from MRNP, representing over 50 % of the reported Washington state caddisfly fauna. The collections of the rare brachycentrid, Eobrachycentrus gelidae Wiggins, represent the second and third known records of adults for this species. Six species, Apatania zonella (Zetterstedt), Asynarchus aldinus (Ross), Limnephilus moestus Banks, Polycentropus flavus (Banks), Rhyacophila vobara Milne, and Neophylax occidentis Banks represent new records for the state of Washington. One new species of Polycentropus was discovered. "

Schmid,F 1953 Contribution à l'étude de la sous-famille des Apataniinae (Trichoptera, Limnophilidae). I. Tijdschrift voor Entomologie 96 (1-2): 109-167.
     Discusses the taxonomy of adult Apatania in French.

Schmid,F 1954 Contribution à l'étude de la sous-famille des Apataniinae (Trichoptera, Limnophilidae). II. Tijdschrift voor Entomologie 97 (1-2): 1-74.

Wiggins, GB 1996 Larvae of the North American Caddisfly Genera (Trichoptera). 2nd Edition. University of Toronto Press, 457 pages.

Zetterstedt,JW 1840 Insecta Lapponica. Lipsiae, Voss. 1140 pages.
     Described as Phryganea stigmatella zonella

Brown,WS 2005 Trichoptera of Gunnison County, Colorado, USA