from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A coarse woolen fabric, yarn, or ribbon binding.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The larva of a caddice fly that generally live in cylindrical cases, open at each end, and covered externally with debris.
  • n. A rough woolen cloth; caddice
  • n. A kind of worsted lace or ribbon.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A kind of worsted lace or ribbon.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Flock or wadding of any fibrous material for stuffing, bombasting, and the like, used in the fifteenth century and later.
  • n. A kind of lint for dressing wounds.
  • n. Wool used for coarse embroidery, nearly like the modern crewel.
  • n. A kind of worsted tape or ribbon.
  • n. A kind of coarse woolen or worsted stuff. The variegated stuff used by the Highlanders of Scotland.
  • n. A coarse serge.
  • n. The larva of the caddis-fly. See caddis-worm.


Probably from Middle English cadace, cotton wool (from Anglo-Norman, from Old Provençal cadarz) and from French cadis, woolen cloth (from Old Provençal).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)


  • "Oh, please, sir, you said there was another cousin called the caddis-worm."

    Little Busybodies The Life of Crickets, Ants, Bees, Beetles, and Other Busybodies

  • Smaller nymphs such as caddis pupae and micro mayflies are producing in the upper drifts with stonefly nymphs and large rubber legs producing in the lower drifts.

    A Secret Streamer Stragey

  • Many small creatures such as caddis-worms will eat the ova, and therefore a careful watch should be kept upon the hatching trays as it is marvellous how such creatures find their way in, in spite of all precautions.

    Amateur Fish Culture

  • I liked where they were planted because halfway across the little spring creek, trout sometimes lined up to feed on surface insects such as caddis and later the occasional sulfur.


  • My 3 yr. old daughter hooked a fish and began reeling it in, but when her hook came up it was attached to a prince nymph which was dropped below an elk hair caddis which was firmly lodged in the mouth of an albino rainbow trout.

    Treasure Snaggin'

  • The Wulff is a great pattern, but my favorite pattern is a tan caddis due to our HUGE caddis hatches almost all year.

    The Mighty Jitterbug

  • I promise. vtbluegrass ... a caddis with a yellow foam post that rises over the wing so semi-blind anglers (no name) can track it in the riffles.

    It's All About Habitat

  • Maryland fishery regulators say the algae can smother aquatic insect larvae such as mayflies, stoneflies and caddis flies -- favorites among trout populations.

    Footwear blamed for 'rock snot' invasion of Md. streams

  • I have some great caddis hatches on my river, the SF of the Snake here in Idaho, and they can provide some great fishing.

    Whats your favorite Hatch to fish?

  • Yes | No | Report from hengst wrote 3 days 18 hours ago elk hair caddis, rainbow warrior, black ice, wolly bugger, egg patterns, hairs ear nymph variation .. honestly I must have 10 thumbs thats about all I am good at .... soon I will take a professional class to get better so far all self taught

    Post your favorite fly patterns to tie

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.


Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • "Dark-green water in lakes like this, and salt water with big waves and a fishy smell; and water coming loud over a dam, and water in brooks all full of caddis houses and green moss. And water in swamps with cat-tails growing out of it. And yellow mud-puddle water that you can wade in, with the mud as soft as butter between your toes."
    The Saturdays by Elizabeth Enright, p 129 of the 2008 paperback edition

    July 2, 2011

  • "It was a pity that she hadn't a casting rod or tied flies—but still worth a try. Caddis flies weren't the only things that rose hungry at twilight, and voracious trout had been known to strike at almost anything that floated in front of them...."
    —Diana Gabaldon, A Breath of Snow and Ashes (New York: Bantam Dell, 2005), 603

    February 1, 2010

  • "... for the first signs of spring: the golden eagles followed by snow buntings, and then the ruby-crowned kinglets; hatches of caddis flies and mosquitoes on which the birds depend for food..."
    —James Campbell, The Final Frontiersman (New York and London: Atria Books, 2004), 139

    September 17, 2008