Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Fun With Flies On the Fourth

Tephritid fly, showing head and mouthparts Tephritid fly showing abdomen and wings in courtship position

Flies are fascinating, horrifying, beautiful, ordinary, and really hard to photograph. The fly in the first two photos is "tephritoid," a new "hedge-your-bets" word I just discovered. It means it's either a member of the Tephritidae, the "True Fruit Flies," or in the same super-family.

This fly is a Picture-Winged Fly, Otitidae. It's both tiny and fast-moving, and the unusual wing tilt (also seen in the previous fly) is part of courtship behavior. The otitids are also tephritoid flies.

Picture-Winged Fly, in courtship mode

This robber fly (family Asilidae) has excellent vision and great agility, and never let me get close as I wanted for a portrait.

Robber fly Robber fly

Some fly links:

  • The Diptera Site--Information about the World's flies
  • Dr. Seuss's "Ann Anopheles"
    This Dr. Seuss piece on Ann was originally printed on the backside of NEWSMAP, distributed by the United States Army Orientation Course, overseas edition, volume II, number 29 [week of October 28 - November 4, 1943]. The piece was originally intended for GIs serving in the tropics. Therefore, some text may be considered dated, and NOT completely appropriate for very young children.


Rick Lee said...

Hi... I just discovered your blog. I'm from Charleston... I don't get to Pocahontas Co as often as I'd like. Check out my Robber Fly pics from last year... click here.

Rebecca Clayton said...

Nice robber fly--thanks for the link! I'm going to enjoy following your blog.