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

Family Chloropidae - Frit Flies

Teeny Tiny Fly Fly 6 - Aphanotrigonum Fly IMG_4821 Frit Fly? - Elachiptera costata Fly IMG_1895 - Thaumatomyia Fly - Meromyza Chloropinae? - Thaumatomyia Fly - Hippelates plebejus - female
Classification
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Diptera (Flies)
No Taxon ("Acalyptratae")
Family Chloropidae (Frit Flies)
Other Common Names
Grass Flies, Stem-miner Flies, Eye Gnats, Pecker Gnats
Explanation of Names
Chloropidae Rondani 1856
Numbers
~280 spp. in our area, close to 3,000 spp. in ~200 genera worldwide(1)
Identification
Color variable, some species blackish or grayish, some brightly colored with black and yellow. Ocellar triangle usually large, shining.
Habitat
Very common in meadows and grassy areas, though they may be found in a variety of habitats
Food
In most spp., larvae feed on grass stems of the families Poaceae, Cyperaceae, and Typhaceae. Some are serious pests of cereals.
Some spp. are saprophages, scavengers, parasites, or predators.
Life Cycle
Most hibernate as larvae; some hibernate as imagos.
Remarks
Some spp. are attracted to the eyes (the so-called 'eye gnats,' vectors of yaws and pink eye)
Some are pollinators of orchids or Araceae flowers.
Print References
(2)(3)
Internet References
Works Cited
1.Thompson F.C., Pape T., Evenhuis N.L. (2013) Systema Dipterorum, Version 1.5
2.Peterson First Guide to Insects of North America
Richard E. White, Christopher Leahy, Roger Tory Peterson. 1998. Houghton Mifflin Co.
3.Borror and DeLong's Introduction to the Study of Insects
Norman F. Johnson, Charles A. Triplehorn. 2004. Brooks Cole.