True Flies (Diptera)

Until I started taking photos, I hadn't appreciated the tremendous diversity of flies. They come in every shape and size, mimic everything from wasps to moths, and eat everything from pollen to human blood. There are approximately 25,000 described species of flies in the U.S., a few thousand less than the number of described beetles.

Tipulidae, Limoniidae, Pediciidae, & Cylindrotomidae (Crane Flies)

Ctenophora sp.Ctenophora sp. (Lexington, 5/28/04 11am) Same as below? C. dorsalis is quite variable in coloration, so it could be another male.

Ctenophora dorsalis?Ctenophora dorsalis? mating (Lexington, 5/30/04 2pm) The female is the red one and the male is the black.

mating (Lexington, 6/19/04 11pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 7/17/10 11pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 5/26/13 5pm)

female Tipula longiventris (Lower Vine Brook, 5/28/11 1pm)

(Lexington, 6/24/04 1am) The color is off on the close-up of the antennae, but this is a sharper picture of the antennae structure.

(Lower Vine Brook, 5/27/12 11pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 5/27/12 11pm)

(Whipple Hill, 5/26/14 12pm)


Ptychopteridae (Phantom Crane Flies)

Bittacomorpha clavipesBittacomorpha clavipesBittacomorpha clavipes (Phantom Crane Fly) (Lower Vine Brook, 5/3/09 11am)


Trichoceridae (Winter Crane Flies)

Ceratopogonidae (Punkies, Biting Midges)


Corethrellidae (Frog Midges)


Chaoboridae (Phantom Midges)

family Chaoboridaefamily Chaoboridaefamily Chaoboridae (Phantom Midge larva) (Lower Vine Brook, 7/14/13 12pm)


Simuliidae (Black Flies)


Psychodidae (Moth Flies)

genus Psychodagenus PsychodaMoth fly perhaps of the genus Psychoda (Lower Vine Brook, 7/28/10 11pm, 6/28/11 10pm)


Anisopodidae (Sand Flies)

Scatopsidae (Minute Black Scavanger Flies)


Culicidae (Mosquitos)

(Lower Vine Brook, 8/17/11 11pm)

male Toxorhynchitini rutilus (Elephant mosquito) (9/1/12 11am)


Chironomidae, Blephariceridae, Deuterophlebidae,Thaumaleidae, Dixidae (Nonbiting Midges)

genus Chironomusfemale genus Chironomusmale midge, perhaps of the genus Chironomus (Lexington, 5/6/06 11pm, 6/22/11 12am)

male midge (Burlington, 4/15/00 4pm)

genus Chironomusgenus Chironomusmale midge, perhaps of the genus Chironomus (Lower Vine Brook, 4/5/10 10pm) A lousy picture of a midge with fantastic antennae.

genus Chironomusmale midge, perhaps of the genus Chironomus (Willard's Woods, 10/8/11 2pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 3/23/12 3pm) Small swarms were flying near to the ground in a very wet section of forest.

male female (Lower Vine Brook, 3/15/14, 3/16/14 4pm) Probably same as above, but better photos.


Cecidomyiidae (Gall Midges)

Bibionidae (Lovebugs)

Mycetophilidae (Glowworms)

Sciaridae (Fungus Gnats)


Keroplatidae (Predatory Fungus Gnats)

larva (Willard's Woods, 6/29/13 6pm) On the underside of a bracket fungus on a rotting log.


Tabanidae (Horse Flies)

Hybomitra lasiophthalmaHybomitra lasiophthalmaHybomitra lasiophthalma (Paint Mine, 6/24/10 10am)

Atherix lantha?Atherix lantha? (Lexington, 5/16/04 11pm)

(Willard's Woods, 8/23/06 10am)

Tabanus similis (Lower Vine Brook, 8/3/2013 4pm)


Athericidae (Deer Flies)

(Whipple Hill, 8/21/12 1pm)

Chrysops sp.Chrysops sp.Chrysops sp. (Deer fly) (Burlington, 7/6/00 11pm)


Rhagionidae (Snipe Flies)

(Willard's Woods, 6/19/05 4pm) I'm not too sure about this one.

Rhagio sp. (Willard's Woods, 6/25/05 1pm)


Stratiomyidae (Soldier Flies)

Hermetia illucens?Hermetia illucens? (Lexington, 9/26/09 1pm) I think this is a fly pupa, and I was hoping to find out when it hatched, but it never did. I found it, along with dozens of others, in my compost heap.


Xylophagidae, Xylomyidae (Subcortical Flies)

Acroceridae (Small-headed Flies)


Asilidae (Robber Flies)

Dioctria baumhaueri?Dioctria baumhaueri?Dioctria baumhaueri? (Willard's Woods, 7/5/08 9am, 6/25/06 11am)

Laphria sericeaLaphria sericea (Lower Vine Brook, 6/19/11 2pm)

Laphria sp. (Willard's Woods, 7/13/13 2pm)

(Willard's Woods, 6/17/12 12pm)

(Willard's Woods, 8/23/13 3pm, Lower Vine Brook, 7/1/2019 4pm) The first photo has a tiny wasp or fly under the main subject.

(Lower Vine Brook, 7/12/14 1pm)

(Willard's Woods, 9/29/13 1pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 8/3/13 3pm)


Therevidae (Stiletto Flies)


Mydidae (Mydas Flies)

Mydas clavatus?Mydas clavatus? (Willard's Woods, 7/30/05 3pm) Unfortunately, I didn't get a picture that shows if it has an orange abdominal segment.

(Lower Vine Brook, 3/23/12 3pm)


Scenopinidae (Window Flies)


Bombyliidae (Bee Flies)

Bombylius majorBombylius major (Bee fly) (Lower Vine Brook, 4/11/10 1pm, Arlington Great Meadows, 4/19/14 11am, Lower Vine Brook, 4/18/15 12pm)

Bombylius incanus (Lower Vine Brook, 6/29/14 12pm)

Anthrax sp.Anthrax sp. (Whipple Hill, 8/18/02 12pm)

(Willard's Woods, 8/16/09 10am)


Empididae (Dance Flies)


Dolichopodidae (Long-legged Flies)

(Willard's Woods, 6/23/02 12pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 6/12/10 11am)

(Willard's Woods, 7/6/08 12pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 6/9/12 11am)


Phoridae (Scuttle Flies)


Syrphidae (Flower Flies)

Spilomyia longicornisSpilomyia longicornisSpilomyia longicornisSpilomyia longicornisSpilomyia longicornisSpilomyia longicornis (Lower Vine Brook, 8/16/09 10am, 8/25/12 11am, 9/23/12 1pm)

Spilomyia fuscaSpilomyia fuscaSpilomyia fusca (Lower Vine Brook, 8/28/13 1pm) This was perfect timing for finding this fly, just 5 days after I was stung by the wasp it mimics!

Sericomyia militaris (Narrow-banded pond fly) (Lower Vine Brook, 6/3/2020 1pm)

Temnostoma sp. either balyras, trifasciatum, barberi, obscurum (Lower Vine Brook, 6/3/2020 1pm)

Somula decora (Spotted wood fly) (Lower Vine Brook, 6/9/13 1pm)

Sericomyia lata (White-spotted pond fly) (Lower Vine Brook, 6/14/2020 3pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 6/12/10 11am)

Toxomerus hover flyToxomerus sp.Toxomerus marginatus (Margined Calligrapher, Toxomerus hover fly) (Willard's Woods, 6/26/05 2pm, Lower Vine Brook, 7/19/09 10am)

(Lower Vine Brook, 7/19/09 10am)

Epistrophe grossulariae?Epistrophe grossulariae? (Lower Vine Brook, 10/11/09 12pm)

(Willard's Woods, 6/2/07 12pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 9/24/12 11am) Almost certainly same as above.

Eristalis flavipes (Lower Vine Brook, 9/10/11 2pm, 5/18/2013 10am)

Eristalis sp. probably tenax (Common Drone Fly) (Lower Vine Brook, 9/23/12 1pm) This is the largest flower fly I have seen.

Blera analisBlera analis (Willard's Woods, 6/10/07 9am)


Pipunculidae (Big-headed Flies)

Platypezidae (Flat-footed Flies)

Lonchopteridae (Spear-winged Flies)


Muscidae, Fannidae, Scathophagidae, Anthomyiidae (House Flies)

Scathophaga stercoraria (Golden dung fly) (Lower Vine Brook, 4/25/2020 3pm) On fresh compost.


Calliphoridae (Cluster Flies, Bluebottles, Screwworms, & Blow Flies)

(Whipple Hill, 4/21/10 2pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 10/11/09 12pm)


Sarcophagidae (Flesh Flies)


Tachinidae, Rhinophoridae (Parasitoid Flies)

Trichopoda pennipesTrichopoda pennipesTrichopoda pennipes (Willard's Woods, 7/15/07 2pm, 8/22/12 2pm)

Trichopoda plumipesTrichopoda plumipesTrichopoda plumipes (Lower Vine Brook, 7/25/10 1pm, Willard's Woods, 9/29/13 1pm)

Epalpus signifer?Epalpus signifer? (Willard's Woods, 5/7/06 11am)

(Willard's Woods, 8/13/05 12pm)

(Willard's Woods, 7/11/10 5pm) Very similar to above, but perhaps browner.

(Lower Vine Brook, 4/25/09 5pm, 4/11/10 1pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 3/11/12 3pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 4/25/10 10am)


Oestridae (Bot Flies and Warble Flies)

Nycteribiidae, Streblidae, Glossinidae, Hippoboscidae (Pupiparous Flies)


Tephritidae, Platystomatidae, Richardiidae, Ulidiidae, Lonchaeidae, Pallopteridae (Apple Maggots, Gall Flies)

Eutreta noveboracensisEutreta noveboracensisEutreta noveboracensis (Lower Vine Brook, 6/20/09 10am, 8/26/12 2pm)

Callopistromyia sp.Callopistromyia sp.Callopistromyia sp. (Peacock fly) (Lower Vine Brook, 6/4/11 10am)

Rivellia sp.Rivellia sp. (Parker Meadow, 6/22/10 10am)

Trupanea sp.Trupanea sp. (Willard's Woods, 10/8/11 2pm)

Icterica seriataIcterica seriata (Willard's Woods, 8/17/03 12pm)

Delphinia picta (Picture-winged fly) (Lower Vine Brook, 6/10/2020 1pm)


Drosophilidae, Diastatidae, Camillidae, Chyromyidae (Fruit Flies, Spittle Suckers, Fungus Flies, Mystery Flies)

Ephydridae (Shore Flies)


Chloropidae, Anthomyzidae, Opomyzidae (Eye Flies and Grass Flies)

Chlorops sp.Chlorops sp.Chlorops sp. (Lower Vine Brook, 6/22/13 10am)


Milichiidae, Braulidae, Carnidae (Kleptoparasitic Flies, Ectoparasitic Flies)

(Willard's Woods, 8/22/12 3pm) This is a guess, but the Milichiidae are known to be attracted to bees killed by spiders and other insects.


Agromyzidae, Psilidae, Tanypezidae, Strongylophthalmyiidae (Leaf, Stem, & Root Miner Flies)

(Willard's Woods, 6/22/11 10am)


Chamaemyiidae, Cremifaniidae, Lauxaniidae (Silver Flies, Aphid Killers, Dead Leaf Miner Flies)

Sciomyzidae, Dryomyzidae (Snail Killers)


Conopidae, Stylogastridae, Pyrgotidae, Cryptochetidae (Killer acalyptrates)

Physocephala sp.Physocephala sp. (Willards Woods, 7/15/07 2pm, Lower Vine Brook, 7/17/10 2pm)


Micropezidae (Stilt-legged Flies)

Clusiidae, Piophilidae, Diopsidae (Head-butting Flies, Head Measuring Flies)

Aulacigastridae, Odiniidae, Periscelididae, Asteiidae, Acartophthalmidae

Heleomyzidae, Curtonotidae

Coelopidae, Sepsidae, Canacidae, Tethinidae (Wrack Flies)

Sphaeroceridae


Unidentified to Family Level

(Meagherville, 5/5/12 5pm)

(Willard's Woods, 7/2/06 10am)

(Willard's Woods, 7/23/06 12pm)

(Dunback Meadow, 7/18/09 2pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 9/24/12 11am)

(Lower Vine Brook, 9/23/12 1pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 9/23/12 1pm) Probably a flower fly.

(Lower Vine Brook, 7/15/10 11pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 9/8/12 12pm, 9/1/12 12pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 7/10/11 11pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 11/20/09 10pm) In the compost pile on a pumpkin.

(Lexington, 5/17/06 11pm)

(Arlington Great Meadow, 4/25/10 11am)

(Lower Vine Brook, 5/3/09 11am)

(Lower Vine Brook, 8/9/08 4pm)

(Lexington, 5/6/06 11pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 3/20/10 2pm)

(Arlington Great Meadows, 4/24/10 11am)

(Lower Vine Brook, 7/12/10 10pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 7/12/10 10pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 7/6/12 1pm) This could be a wasp. It is too small for me to be able to tell with the equipment that I have.

(Lower Vine Brook, 7/6/12 1pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 10/27/12 1pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 7/3/13 11am)

(Lower Vine Brook, 7/3/13 3pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 5/11/13 10am)

(Lower Vine Brook, 9/14/13 2pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 5/11/13 10am)

female male (Whipple Hill, 5/26/14 11am)

(Whipple Hill, 5/5/13 1pm)

(Whipple Hill, 5/5/13 1pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 9/14/13 2pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 9/12/13 12pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 9/7/13 12pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 9/28/13 11am)

(Lower Vine Brook, 10/12/13 12pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 10/12/13 12pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 10/12/13 12pm) It was covered with more white fluff before I caught it.

(Lower Vine Brook, 4/12/14 11am)

(Lower Vine Brook, 7/12/14 1pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 7/12/14 1pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 6/29/14 12pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 5/24/14 12pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 7/19/14 11am)

(Lower Vine Brook, 7/19/14 11am)

(Lower Vine Brook, 7/20/14 2pm)

(Parker Meadow, 8/2/2014 4pm)

(Willard's Woods, 8/9/14 12pm)

(Whipple Hill, 8/16/14 11am)

(Whipple Hill, 8/16/14 11am)

(Lower Vine Brook, 8/10/14 11am)

(Willard's Woods, 5/29/15 11am)

(Lower Vine Brook, 4/12/15 1pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 4/20/2020 3pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 4/18/15 12pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 5/9/15 4pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 4/12/15 1pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 7/7/13 2pm)

(Lower Vine Brook, 8/2/15 5pm)

larva on honeysuckle (Lower Vine Brook, 6/4/10 10am)

(Lower Vine Brook, 3/18/12 3pm) In a rotting log.

larva in water (Willard's Woods, 4/10/10 5pm)


Identification & Links


Home Insects Spiders