Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada

Species Trichopoda pennipes

Tachina Fly - Trichopoda pennipes Fly - Trichopoda pennipes - female Tachinid Fly - Trichopoda pennipes Feather-legged Fly - Trichopoda pennipes - male Trichopoda? - Trichopoda pennipes Trichopoda pennipes - female feather-legged fly - Trichopoda pennipes Trichopoda pennipes - female
Classification
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Diptera (Flies)
No Taxon (Calyptratae)
Superfamily Oestroidea
Family Tachinidae (Parasitic Flies)
Subfamily Phasiinae
Tribe Gymnosomatini
Genus Trichopoda (Feather-legged Flies)
No Taxon (Subgenus Galactomyia)
Species pennipes (Trichopoda pennipes)
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Trichopoda pennipes (Fabricius 1781)
Size
7-13 mm
Identification
Bright orange abdomen, velvety black head and thorax, and a fringe of short black hairs on the hind legs. Male: ferrugineous spot in the wing, abdomen dark orange at apex; female: wing evenly dusky, abdominal tip black.
Range
Most of the US + ON(1)
Food
Hosts: various pentatomorph bugs (Coreidae, Largidae, Pentatomidae, Scutelleridae); also recorded ex Tenodera australasiae (a mantid)(1); Anasa tristis is an important common host
Life Cycle
Female lays one to several eggs on a host. The hatched larvae burrow into the bug's body, though only one larva per host will survive. Eventually a cream-colored maggot exits the host (which soon dies) and pupates in a dark puparium in the soil; adult emerges ~2 weeks later. There are up to 3 generations a year depending on location; larvae may overwinter inside overwintering hosts. See Worthley (1924)
Remarks
Used in control of heteropteran pests; may hover above squash plants in search of prey.
introduced into Europe during late 1980s and is now frequently spotted in the south of Europe (2)
destroys up to 80% of the adult squash bugs
Internet References
Fact sheet by S. Mahr
Works Cited
1.Taxonomic and host catalogue of the Tachinidae of America North of Mexico
2.Alien terrestrial arthropods of Europe
Roques A., Kenis M., Lees D., Lopez-Vaamonde C., Rabitsch W., Rasplus J.-Y., Roy D., eds. 2010. BioRisk 4 Special Issue; 2 vols., 1028 pp.