If you scour along the riverbank you’re likely to find molts (or exuviae) of dragonfly, damselfly, stonefly nymphs (naiads) clinging to rocks and vegetation. We’re not 100% sure what’s going on here, but it appears that Kamal found something even better, a freshly molted stonefly. Stoneflies crawl out of the water …cling to a rock, branch or other solid object …split their exoskeleton up the middle of their back, and emerge as an adult. You’ll notice that the wings look crumpled and milky white rather than transparent. The wings must “inflate” and harden before the individual can fly off to search for a mate. Interested in seeing an example of the molting process in action? Click or tap here.
Photos by: Kamal Anny Alice Fox on 4/11/21 along the Clark Fork River in Missoula, MT