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Introduction

Linnaeus’s original taxon is now a relatively small family confined to the more northern latitudes. Leach (1815) circumscribed the Linnaean genus Phryganea to the species P. grandis, and placed the genus Phryganea in the tribe Phryganides with Limnephilus. Burmeister (1839) was the first to use the name Phryganeidae, as a subfamily of Phryganeodea; Burmeister’s Phryganeidae included species currently placed in Sericostomatidae and Limnephilidae. By the late 19th century, most workers recognized a unit similar to the modern concept of Phryganeidae. Wiggins (1998) published a landmark treatise on the Phryganeidae, the only full-length book devoted to an entire family of caddisflies, which serves as the definitive reference. The family currently contains some 80 extant species in 15 genera. One genus, the monotypic Yphria Milne, from the Sierra Nevada of California and southern Oregon, is assigned to its own subfamily, Yphriinae. All other genera are in Phryganeinae. The nominotypical genus Phryganea, as currently recognized, contains only a handful of species from Asia, Europe, and North America. The largest genera (neither with more than 20 described species) are Agrypnia Curtis, found across the northern latitudes of Europe, Asia, and North America, and Eubasilissa Martynov, which is entirely Asian. Species in the latter genus include the largest extant caddisflies. Most genera contain only a handful of species: Banksiola Martynov (Nearctic), Hagenella Martynov (Holarctic), Neurocyta Navás (mountains of northern India and bordering countries), Semblis Fabricius (Palearctic), Oligotricha Rambur (Palearctic, with 1 species extending into Alaska and the Yukon). Four genera are monotypic: Agrypnetes McLachlan (Palearctic), Beothukus Wiggins (Nearctic); Fabria Milne (Nearctic); and Trichostegia Kolenati (northern and central Europe). Except in Yphria, which incorporates rock fragments into its case, phryganeid larvae construct cases of plant material, cut to size and fastened together in rings or a continuous spiral. Maybe because of their conspicuous size, adults of many phryganeid species have developed chemical and/or mechanical defense systems; many species produce an odiferous fluid from the anal opening when handled, and - uniquely within the Trichoptera - at least some species of Eubasilissa have urticating setae on the thorax and wings. Larvae are generally found among aquatic plants in ponds and marshes; some occur in slow flowing waters, a few are found in temporary pools and deep lake waters. Predation and herbivory are common larval feeding strategies in this family. (From Holzenthal et al., 2007)

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