Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada
Clickable Guide
Moths Butterflies Flies Caterpillars Flies Dragonflies Flies Mantids Cockroaches Bees and Wasps Walkingsticks Earwigs Ants Termites Hoppers and Kin Hoppers and Kin Beetles True Bugs Fleas Grasshoppers and Kin Ticks Spiders Scorpions Centipedes Millipedes

Upcoming Events

Photos of insects and people from the 2022 BugGuide gathering in New Mexico, July 20-24

National Moth Week was July 23-31, 2022! See moth submissions.

Photos of insects and people from the Spring 2021 gathering in Louisiana, April 28-May 2

Photos of insects and people from the 2019 gathering in Louisiana, July 25-27

Photos of insects and people from the 2018 gathering in Virginia, July 27-29

Photos of insects and people from the 2015 gathering in Wisconsin, July 10-12

Previous events


Family Mycetophilidae - Fungus Gnats

Gnat exploring spider silk - Mycomya Fungus Gnat - female Fungus gnat - on Tolmiea menziesii - Gnoriste megarrhina Sciaridae? Leia opima ? Mycetophilid Frankengnat - Neoempheria - female Unknown
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Diptera (Flies)
No Taxon ("Nematocera" (Non-Brachycera))
Infraorder Bibionomorpha (Gnats, Gall Midges, and March Flies)
Superfamily Sciaroidea (Fungus Gnats and Gall Midges)
Family Mycetophilidae (Fungus Gnats)
Explanation of Names
Mycetophilidae Newman 1834
ca. 620 spp. in >70 genera in our area(1), >4,500 spp. in 233 genera total(2)
2.2-13.5 mm(1)
cosmopolitan, well-represented in forested areas worldwide(3)
mostly wet forests; also quite common in swamps; some live in the moister parts of heath and open grassland. Larvae mainly bound to the sporophores of fleshy Basidiomycetes, others (esp. Mycomyinae, Sciophilinae, and Leiinae) spin glutinous webs under sporophores or under bark of dead trunks and branches.(3)
Spores and/or hyphae of fleshy Basidiomycetes; some species can be bred from Polyporaceae (bracket fungi) and rarely from Ascomycetes and Myxomycetes. A few species are monophagous or polyphagous, but the majority of species are restricted to particular genera or families of fungi. Some of the web-spinning larvae are predaceous and others mycophagous. A few exotic species live on mosses and liverworts.(3)
The distinctive black-headed larvae abundant in mushrooms belong to this family.(4)
The flowers of Jack-in-the-pulpit (Arisaema) lure and trap adult fungus gnats with their fungus smell and accomplish pollination by these means.