Fish flies: Good guys that get a bad rap - KMSP-TV

Fish flies: Good guys that get a bad rap

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Mayfly  (Credit: WJBK | myFOXDetroit.com) Mayfly (Credit: WJBK | myFOXDetroit.com)
SOUTHFIELD, Mich. (WJBK) -

Downtown Mount Clemens and even further inland this season as far as Sterling Heights, wind patterns have carried some fish flies where not fish fly has gone before, or at least it seems that way.

Before we go any further this correction.  You call them fish flies, but Metroparks naturalist Nick Di Cresce explained they are actually mayflies.

He said these critters that some call creepy are misunderstood.  The reason the mayflies come out?  Love is in the air.

"When they come out of the water, it's basically all about making babies," Di Cresce told us.  "They don't eat.  They're basically just up here mating."

So, even though these mayflies may be bugging you during the month of June, naturalists at the Metroparks say they're actually good news.  They're indicators of a good environment.

"These guys are a great indicator of fresh water, so clean water.  If you don't have them, it's definitely time to worry," said Di Cresce.

Before mating season, they spend two years under water where they're credited with eating decaying algae keeping our water clean.

So, Di Cresce says they're to good guys that get a really bad rap.

Another reason not to shun mayflies is that they're good for the food chain, too.  Robins, toads and frogs are happy to see them out and about this June.

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