Mayflies feed only as larvae. By the time they reach the adult stage, their mouthparts and digestive systems have mostly dis appeared. Most larvae eat bits of living or dead algae (AL-jee) from the bottom of their water habitat. Burrowing species flap their abdominal gills to draw water into their burrows. They use their mouthparts and legs to strain out bits of algae from the incoming water. Other species scrape algae off rocks and logs with their mouthparts. A few species attack and eat the aquatic, or water-living, larvae of flies.

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