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Dixidae - Meniscus-midges

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Classification

NEMATOCERA, Culicomorpha, Culicoidea

Number of British species: 15

Size: S

Difficulty: 1-3

Characters

Small to medium sized (3-5.5 mm), yellowish to brownish grey Nematocera. Antennae, wings, legs and abdomen long and slender. Ocelli absent; antenna with 16 segments. Wing usually clear, with an anal lobe and in some cases characteristic pigment spots; vein R2+3 strongly curving. Tibiae of fore and mid leg with short spurs.

Biology

The larvae are found at or near the water surface where they take on a characteristic body posture, a reversed U shape, near the edge of the water or just above it, holding themselves up by objects projecting from the water surface. Pupation also takes place there. They are filter feeders, living on microorganisms and tiny particles of organic matter. Dixa larvae prefer running water, those of Dixella are usually found in stagnant water, while both genera occur in slow-moving water. The adults mainly occur near the larval habitats where the males may fly in swarms.

Identification

 
families/nematocera/dixidae.txt · Last modified: 2008/05/24 17:00 (external edit)     Back to top
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