On the transport of fish eggs by the water-beetle Dytiscus marginalis.
I received your welcome note of May 2
My first impression that the D. marginalis was the agent that conveyed the
eggs of fish from lake to lake, was received from a story told, I believe, by Kirby, of a
In 1846 I had the pleasure of studying the history of this insect, on the shores of several of our mountain lakes in north Pennsylvania, and found that it fed on fish and the fish roe that it found near the margin of these Lakes, destroying numbers of the lake trout which are found only in these inland seas, in deep water, and never in the outlets, most of these lakes are supplied with water by springs at the bottom, only, and have no communication with other lakes, emptying into rivers, where lake trout are never seen.
While on a visit in Montrose, Susquehanna Co Pennsylvania, I was presented with a Dyticus marginalis, which flew into a window, attracted by the light of a lamp, he must have flown at least three miles, as there is no lake nearer that town, but several of some miles in extent about that distance from Montrose— this specimen had no roe on it—but those feeding on the margin of the lake were covered with it—leaving no doubt in my mind as to the fact that they thus carried the eggs, from lake to lake and peopled them with fish that had no other means of being transported—
If this meagre account can throw any light on the subject be assured it will give me much pleasure, and will continue to persue the subject if it continues to interest naturalists, it will make me most happy to communicate with you on this subject, or any other question in natural history that may have fallen under my observation.
The answer to your inquiry of our friends M
My Sister joins me in kind remembrance | and believe me | Very
respectfully | M H Morris.
- f1 1701.f1See letters to J. D. Hooker, 7 April  and 13 April , and letter from Asa Gray, 30 June 1855. Margaretta Hare Morris has not been further identified.
- f2 1701.f2Richard Chandler Alexander had travelled and botanised in North America in 1849. See letters to J. D. Hooker, 7 April  and 13 April .
- f3 1701.f3CD was collecting facts concerning the possible transportal of the ova of fish by birds and insects. See letters to John Davy, 25 March  and 26 March .
- f4 1701.f4William Kirby.