Mark Odegard markodegard at HOTMAIL.COM
Wed Jun 13 19:46:15 UTC 2001

'Fishfly' is a regional item.

On the stretch of the Mississippi River I live near to, we have fishflies.
After the first few days of hot weather, they turn into brief-lived winged
insects in order to breed. By the gazillions. Some years are worse than
others, but thankfully, the invasion is short-lived, and they confine
themselves mostly to the area around the river (winds can carry them miles
away, however). The morning after, you can have huge heaps (a foot or two or
three) of dead insects, particularly around lights. They often turn off
bridge lights and city street lights during fishfly nights. It's that awful,
Hitchcockian in scope.

I saw the season's first fishfly today. We're rather far from their normal
range of a mile or three inland from the river, but it's windy today.

For this part of the country (Dubuque and up north), I don't know the formal
name of the local critter. Ephemeroptera or Megaloptera come to mind. The
dictionaries at hand are not too helpful, at least for 'fishfly'. The mayfly
seems to be a different critter, tho' it has similar habits.

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