science education resource

For K-12 Students • Educators • Homeschool Families • Naturalists

Dobsonfly (Eastern)

To view these resources with no ads please Login or Subscribe (and help support our site).

Corydalus cornutus
Dobsonfly (Eastern)


They are found in the eastern U.S. west to the eastern side of the Rocky Mountains.


They live on plants near fast-moving water.

Body Traits

They are about 2" long with a long, tannish-brown body covered with long, clear, veined wings. Males have long, hooked mandibles. The female's mandibles are shorter.


In their young phase (larvae), they live underwater for 3 years. Fisherman will use them as bait because trout eat them in the wild.


In their young, under-water phase (larva), they eat water insects. Adults do not eat.

To view these resources with no ads, please Login or Subscribe (and help support our site).


Females lay 100-1,000 eggs in a round white gooey mass on rocks, plants or tree branches near the water. When they hatch, the young phase (larvae) fall or crawl into the water. After 3 years, they crawl out of the water and spend the winter under a stone. In the spring, they come out as adults to mate and lay eggs.

Dobsonfly (Eastern)


Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Megaloptera
Family: Corydalidae
Genus: Corydalus
Species: C. cornutus

Citing Research References

When you research information you must cite the reference. Citing for websites is different from citing from books, magazines and periodicals. The style of citing shown here is from the MLA Style Citations (Modern Language Association).

When citing a WEBSITE the general format is as follows.
Author Last Name, First Name(s). "Title: Subtitle of Part of Web Page, if appropriate." Title: Subtitle: Section of Page if appropriate. Sponsoring/Publishing Agency, If Given. Additional significant descriptive information. Date of Electronic Publication or other Date, such as Last Updated. Day Month Year of access < URL >.

Here is an example of citing this page:

Amsel, Sheri. "Dobsonfly (Eastern)" Exploring Nature Educational Resource ©2005-2023. March 31, 2023
< > has more than 2,000 illustrated animals. Read about them, color them, label them, learn to draw them.