Mayflies have long narrow bodies and large wings, with a second set of smaller hind wings behind them (in a similar way to butterflies and moths). This allows the mayfly to have greater agility and power when it is in the air. Adult mayflies tend to be herbivorous only really surviving on algae although there are a number of known mayfly species that prey on other insects. The adult mayfly has a very short lifespan which can be anywhere from to half an hour to a few weeks long.
The adult mayflies have a number of predators out of the water including amphibians such as frogs, toads and newts, small reptiles, birds and even rodents and mammals. However, the aquatic longer-lived mayfly nymphs too have predators including fish and amphibians. The female mayfly can lays thousands of eggs at time which she does so into the water. The mayfly nymph are aquatic and hatch in the water where they can take anywhere from a few months to more than a year to transform into an adult mayfly and head into the air.