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Dobsonfly (toe biter) (Archichauliodes)

Taxonomic group

Corydalidae: Archichauliodes

Diagnostic features

Archichauliodes dobsonfly larvae are amongst the largest of our freshwater insects. They are quite distinctive with tentacle-like gills along the sides of the abdomen, extensive blackening of the head and thorax, and large mandibles.

Typical habitats

Archichauliodes larvae are common in hard-bottom streams in bush covered and farmland areas.


They are predators, using their large serrated mandibles to capture other stream invertebrates.

Indicator value

  • Hard bottom: 7
  • Soft bottom: 7.3

The tolerance values (ranging from 0 to 10) give an indication of which are the sensitive taxa (values of 8 or more) and which are the tolerant taxa (values of 3 or less). For more information see: Indicator species

Archichauliodes are common in streams with moderate to good water quality. They have tolerance values of 7 (hard bottom sites) and 7.3 (soft bottom sites).