Phylocentropus is the only genus in the family Dipseudopsidae in North America, with 5 species occurring here. Larvae make branching tube-like retreats buried in sand or soft sediment, the tips of the branches poke above the sediment. They tend to live in pools or along the edges of slow-moving water. They are found throughout the eastern and central United States. A large, movable spinneret is used to produce silk and shore up the sides of the retreat. Characters unique to this group include a large hump between membranous meso- and metanota, and flattened tarsi longer than their tibiae.
Upper Midwest: 4
Collector / Filterer
Widespread (east of the Rocky Mtns.)
+ Expanded Character List
Order: Larvae: Wings/wing pads absent. Eye spots present, but compound eyes absent. Antennae usually small, inconspicuous. Three pairs of segmented legs present on thorax. Pair of anal prolegs, each with single hook, located on last abdominal segment. Larvae can be free-living, in silken retreats attached to substrate, or in usually-portable tubes or cases made of sand, rocks, or plant material.
Family: Large spinneret, half as long as head. Labrum sclerotized, never withdrawn or T-shaped. Antennae tiny and inconspicuous. Pronotum without anterolateral lobes. Meso- and metanota membranous with large hump between them. Tarsi flattened and longer than tibiae. Abdominal tergum IX without sclerite. Larvae living in branching tube-like retreats buried in sand or soft sediment, except tips of branches sticking above sediment.
Genus: Because Phylocentropus is the only genus in the family Dipsudopsidae, the genus-level and family-level diagnostic characters are the same.