Medium sized larvae, up to 7 mm long.
Antenna with 6 consecutively shorter segments; segment 6 vestigial. Blade shorter to longer than flagellum. Lauterborn organs distinct, shorter than segment 3.
Labrum with SI finely or more coarsely plumose. Labral lamella simple, triangular, weakly sclerotized. Pecten epipharyngis consisting of 3 simple, sclerotized, smooth spines. 6 pairs of chaetulae laterales present, 1-3 of these apically serrated. Premandible with 2 apical and 1 low inner accessory tooth; brush absent.
Mandible with apical tooth shorter than combined width of 3 inner teeth. Seta subdentalis serrated or indented. Seta interna with smooth branches.
Mentum usually dark colored with double median tooth and 6 pairs of lateral teeth; first lateral tooth reduced; occasionally with 2-3 light colored median teeth and first and sixth lateral teeth reduced. Ventromental plate extended lateral of mentum; with fine beard of few to several setae beneath.
Maxilla with anterior lacinial chaetae broad, flat, apically pointed. Lamellae of galea simple or serrated. Pecten galearis well developed.
Body with procercus well developed, sclerotized caudally; with 7 apical setae. Anal setae more than 3 times as long as supraanal seta. Anal tubules as long as to much longer than posterior parapods.
Larvae of Zalutschia live primarily in lakes, but are also found in ponds, puddles, ditches and occasionally in streams. Most species are northern and occur primarily in oligotrophic and dystrophic lakes.
The genus is Holarctic, containing some 14 described species. Ten described as larvae; three species are described as larvae only and may by synonyms of two other species (Saether, 1976a).