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Ralph W. Holzenthal, Roger J. Blahnik, Aysha Prather, and Karl Kjer
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taxon links [up-->]Lepidostomatinae [up-->]Theliopsychinae [down<--]Plenitentoria Interpreting the tree
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Containing group: Plenitentoria


This family is widely distributed throughout the Northern Hemisphere, and extends southward to Panama, New Guinea, and the Afrotropical region. It was originally described by Ulmer (1903) as a subfamily of Sericostomatidae. The nominotypical subfamily contains 3 genera and most of the species: Hummeliella Forsslund is a monotypic genus from China; Lepidostoma Rambur contains most of the diversity in the family (ca. 380 species; Afrotropical, Australasian, Palearctic, and Nearctic); and Paraphlegopteryx Ulmer (ca. 20 species) is widespread in the East Palearctic and Oriental regions. The subfamily Theliopsychinae Weaver, 1993 contains 4 genera: Crunoecia McLachlan and Martynomyia Fischer are West Palearctic genera with only a handful of species each; Theliopsyche Banks is a Nearctic genus with half a dozen species; and Zephyropsyche Weaver is a small genus (4 species) from South and Southeast Asia. Larval cases are generally square in cross section and constructed of quadrate leaf or bark pieces. Some species build cylindrical cases of sand grains as early instars and switch to 4-sided cases as they mature; a few retain the sand grain cases throughout larval development. Larvae are generally inhabitants of cool streams and springs, but they may also occur along the shorelines of lakes. They are primarily detritivores. Weaver (1988) provided a synopsis of the North American species and a review of the world species (Weaver 2002), where he synonymized several genera, formerly separated by secondary sexual characters of the male, with Lepidostoma. Myers and Sperling (2002) looked at the relationships of the subgenera of Lepidostoma, based on mitochondrial DNA sequence data. (From Holzenthal et al., 2007)


Holzenthal R.W., Blahnik, R.J., Prather, A.L., and Kjer K.M. 2007. Order Trichoptera Kirby 1813 (Insecta), Caddisflies. In: Zhang, Z.-Q., and Shear, W.A. (Eds). 2007 Linneaus Tercentenary: Progress in Invertebrate Taxonomy. Zootaxa. 1668:639698.

Myers, M.J. & Sperling, F.A.H. (2002) Preliminary evaluation of subgeneric designations within the caddisfly genus Lepidostoma (Rambur) (Trichoptera: Lepidostomatidae) based on mtDNA sequences. Nova Supplementa Entomologica (Proceedings of the 10th International Symposium on Trichoptera), 15, 187194.

Ulmer, G. (1903) Ueber die Metamorphose der Trichopteren. Abhandlungen des Naturwissenschaftlichen vereins in Hamburg, 18, 1154.

Weaver, J.S., III. (1988) A synopsis of the North American Lepidostomatidae (Trichoptera). Contributions of the American Entomological Institute, 24, 1141.

Weaver, J.S. (2002) A synonymy of the caddisfly genus Lepidostoma Rambur (Trichoptera: Lepidostomatidae), including a species checklist. Tijdschrift voor Entomologie, 145, 173192.

Title Illustrations
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Scientific Name Lepidostoma bryanti
Specimen Condition Dead Specimen
Life Cycle Stage Adult
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Source Collection Barcode of Life Database (BOLD)
About This Page

Ralph W. Holzenthal
University of Minnesota, St. Paul, Minnesota, USA

Roger J. Blahnik
University of Minnesota, St. Paul, Minnesota, USA

Aysha Prather
Centre for Biodiversity and Conservation Biology, Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Karl Kjer
Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA

Correspondence regarding this page should be directed to Ralph W. Holzenthal at , Roger J. Blahnik at , Aysha Prather at , and Karl Kjer at

Page: Tree of Life Lepidostomatidae. Authored by Ralph W. Holzenthal, Roger J. Blahnik, Aysha Prather, and Karl Kjer. The TEXT of this page is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike License - Version 3.0. Note that images and other media featured on this page are each governed by their own license, and they may or may not be available for reuse. Click on an image or a media link to access the media data window, which provides the relevant licensing information. For the general terms and conditions of ToL material reuse and redistribution, please see the Tree of Life Copyright Policies.

Citing this page:

Holzenthal, Ralph W., Roger J. Blahnik, Aysha Prather, and Karl Kjer. 2010. Lepidostomatidae. Version 20 July 2010 (under construction). http://tolweb.org/Lepidostomatidae/14611/2010.07.20 in The Tree of Life Web Project, http://tolweb.org/

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