Species of Plecoptera, or stoneflies, are known to use vertical emergence supports, and researchers believe many species of Plecoptera exploit arboreal habitats during emergence. However, the exact nature of these arboreal behaviors has largely remained a mystery. While exploring the habitat potential of Pinus strobus (L.) (Eastern White Pine) canopies in northern Wisconsin we observed Acroneuria lycorias (Newman) (Boreal Stonefly, Plecoptera: Perlidae) exuviae at heights as high as 12m (observations at 6.6, 9, 9.5, and 12m). Most A. lycorias exuviae appeared to have a strong preference for emergence sites at the underside or base of branches similar to some Odonate species. We also observed A. lycorias, adults climbing upwards along the main stem, post-emergence, to heights up to 22m. To our knowledge, these heights represent the greatest heights ever documented for A. lycorias adults and exuviae, or any Plecopteran species. While other researchers have speculated that A. lycorias uses arboreal habitats during emergence, these behaviors were considered almost impossible to describe. Our observations provide us with new insights into Plecopteran emergence behaviors, especially for this species. We propose three alternative hypotheses that may explain these unique emergence behaviors.
Hoff, Hannah; Martin, Jonathan G.; Liesch, Patrick J.; and Olson, Erik R.
"Acroneuria lycorias (Boreal Stonefly, Plecoptera: Perlidae) Emergence Behaviors Discovered in Pinus strobus Canopy,"
The Great Lakes Entomologist, vol 52
Available at: https://scholar.valpo.edu/tgle/vol52/iss1/10