Giant Mayfly

Giant Mayfly (Ephemeroptera) Hexagenia limbata

This little(giant) guy was taking a siesta on my roller furling line last Saturday morning at the Lake City Marina, scouting out the area for the impending invasion. He/she was a friendly chap and after a brief conversation, I bid him/her farewell and invited him/her to take leave. OK, so I threw the little bugger in the lake. Anywho, it is only a matter of time before our boats are once again covered with 1000’s of mayflies. It is a summer ritual that in a strange way I almost look forward to. Giant Mayflies are a good indicator as to the health of a body of water and as such I am somewhat happy to see them every year. They tend to be fairly cooperative when brushing them off your boat and usually fly away on their own with a little coaxing with a whisk broom. That is if you happen to be on your boat when they hatch. And really, who can blame them for being a bit tired after their one and only night of life as an adult. Their Latin name, Ephemeroptera, literally means “lasting a day.”  They spend a couple years as a nymph, hatch in the night, find a mate, have sex and die. Live fast, die young seems to be their mantra.