Therevidae - Stiletto-flies

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Classification

BRACHYCERA, Asilomorpha, Asiloidea Number of British species: 14

Size: M

Difficulty: 1-3

Scheme: Covered by the Larger-Brachycera recording scheme

Characters

Slender to more or less stout small to large (2.5-15 mm) flies, often strongly pubescent with stronger bristles on thorax and legs; colour varying from pale yellow to black. Frons of female in many species with glossy black markings; eyes usually holoptic in the male; antenna variable, first or third segment often the longest; the latter followed by no, or 12 smaller segments and a small apical style. Wing clear or tinged, in some cases with markings or bands; cell m3 strongly narrowing toward hind margin, or closed; cell cup closed. Legs relatively long and slender; tibiae with apical bristles; empodium bristle-like or absent.

Biology

The larvae live in sandy soil, underneath tree bark and in dead wood, where they prey on a range of small invertebrates, in particular beetle larvae. The adults are found in various habitats but prefer open, sunny places in very dry areas they are often found near water. They are able fliers but often sit on the ground or on rocks, leaves, branches tree trunks, etc. Contrary to many other lower Brachycera the adults are not predatory but feed on nectar, plant or animal juices and other organic matter.

Identification

 
families/brachycera/old_brachycera/therevidae.txt · Last modified: 2008/05/24 17:01 (external edit)     Back to top
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