caddisfly larvae (2)

photo: Fabrice Parais

Caddisfly larvae (Hydropsyche angustipennis) are some of the best architects in the insect world. They’re members of the order Trichoptera which means they are closely related to butterflies (though I can’t say they’re as attractive…). Their larvae develop underwater and in order to protect themselves, baby Caddisflies will gather materials from their environment and then glue them together with a sticky silk they produce. They’ll make their cases out of literally anything, including:



caddisfly larvae (5)

photo: Hunterian Museum

and Sand/Rocks:

caddisfly larvae (8)

photo: Fred Hayes for the University of Utah

They’re pretty resourceful. Even if they can’t find natural substances to make their little cases out of, they’ll work with what they’ve got – or been given. So, French artist Hubert Duprat decided to take them up on this predilection by giving them jewels, gold, opals, turquoise, and other shiny things to craft their sheaths out of:

caddisfly larvae (3)

photo: Hubert Duprat

The resulting cases end up being one of a kind pieces that can be strung up like jewelry. Wouldn’t you like to have a necklace made entirely of Caddisfly-crafted beads?

caddisfly larvae (4)

photo: Hubert Duprat

caddisfly larvae (6)

photo: Hubert Duprat

caddisfly larvae (1)

photo: Hubert Duprat