Cad­dis­flies are an order (Tri­choptera) of insects with approx­i­mate­ly 12,000 described species. They can be described as small, moth-like insects with two pairs of hair and mem­bra­nous wings. One of the most inter­est­ing fea­tures of the cad­dis­fly is the dec­o­ra­tive and very beau­ti­ful pro­tec­tive shells that they build while in the lar­val stage. I sug­gest you admire the amaz­ing jew­el­ry shells cre­at­ed by the cad­dis.


Cad­dis­fly lar­vae are aquat­ic and can be found in a vari­ety of habi­tats such as streams, rivers, lakes, ponds, and even tem­po­rary pud­dles. The lar­vae gath­er any mate­r­i­al they come across to form their pro­tec­tive cara­pace, bind­ing the var­i­ous mate­ri­als togeth­er with silk they secrete from their sali­vary glands near their mouths.

Some vari­eties of cad­dis flies tend to use dif­fer­ent mate­ri­als for their pro­tec­tive cara­pace. The artists exper­i­ment­ed by grow­ing their own cad­dis­fly and sup­ply­ing it with unique build­ing mate­ri­als like gold and pearls to cre­ate dec­o­ra­tive pro­tec­tive shells. These shells were pre­served as art after the cad­dis­fly under­went meta­mor­pho­sis. In this col­lec­tion you will find a gallery of unique shells, as well as sev­er­al exam­ples of jew­el­ry cre­at­ed by the cad­dis.


Since the ear­ly 1980s, French artist Hubert Duprat has been using insects to build some of his sculp­tures. By remov­ing cad­dis lar­vae from their nat­ur­al habi­tat and sup­ply­ing them with pre­cious mate­ri­als such as beads, pearls and gold in his own aquar­i­um, Hubert encour­ages them to pro­duce jew­el­ry that resem­bles the cre­ations of gold­smiths.

See also
Marc Da Cunha Lopes and his work