Tisa’s flower is an ancient insect species. Ascendants of this species emerged some 200 million years ago. The Tisa River is one of the last sanctuaries where the Tisa’s flower has its massive appearance every year.
This is rare scene, wedding dance above Tisa River. Only few days in Juny every year (even not every year), beautiful insect Tisa's flower or Tisa mayflies (Palingenia longicauda) is borning, making love and die. For three hours, everything is finished. Palingenia longicauda hasn't mouth becouse it doesn't eat - it just make love and die, during his short but beautiful life. This is realy amazing scene and it is very hard to show it by photo or words...
It is possible to enjoy one of the most beautiful natural phenomenons in the world that lasts only five days in early June. Thousands of yellow insects fly in fervor just above the river surface conjuring the creation of the universe. The Tisa flower lives for three years at the bottom of the river. It very well represents the essence of nature's imagination, which is for only a few hours perfectly reflected in the passion of these delicate beings.
The Tisa Mayfly (Palingenia longicauda) is the largest mayfly species in Europe, males measuring up to 12 cm (5 inches) from head to tail. This long-tailed mayflies are aquatic insects which belong to the Ephemeroptera order. Their larval stage usually lasts three years. The adults are short-lived: once fully matured, they have roughly three hours to mate and then die. Male Tisa Mayflies are unique among the winged insects in that they molt one more time after acquiring functional wings. This second-to-last winged instar is usually a matter of minutes.
Typically, all Tisa Mayflies mature at once, and for about a week in mid June, they will be everywhere after 5.00-6.00 PM, dancing over the river in large groups, molting on trees or on the ground, or resting on every available surface, including onlookers. This natural phenomenon with varied intensity is called Tisa blooming. Once they fully mature (after their second molting into a winged state), males have only a few hours to find females and mate before both sexes die. Squadrons of mature males will skim over the river's surface, seeking females.
After mating, the female mayflies start a compensation flight up the river, to ensure that the eggs laid on the river will sink down to the bottom at the place where their parents emerged. After about 45 days, the eggs hatch into larvae, which remain buried in the mud for three years, until they emerge and molt into adults.
The mayflies are pollution-sensitive animals, thus if they are in or around the water, the water should be of a good quality. Besides being environmental indicators, the mayflies are also a favorite food of many fish, and consequently a favorite bait used by fishermen.
The Tisa Mayfly has become extinct in many European countries, and now it can be seen only in N Serbia (Vojvodina province) and Hungary.