Beatriz Moisset started a thread about this (168663
), but I don’t want to burden her with having to update it as I am going to add a lot of information.
Here is a list of the families of flies in North America that do not have photos on Bugguide. Flies are the worst represented, family-wise, of the megadiverse insect orders on this site. A family wish-list seemed to help the beetles, so I'm hoping it will help here. I will first present the lists.
The first is a list of the families of which we have no photos. The second is a list of the families for which we don’t have photos of live specimens. The last is a list of the families for which we DO have images of the larvae, as you can see, family coverage of immature flies needs much work.
These latin names mean nothing to most people, so to help facilitate the addition of new families, I have written a short summary of each family we don’t have and where to find it.
I compiled this information from personal communications and the Manual of Nearctic Diptera (1) (2)
. The regions I give refer to North America north of Mexico. Note that there are many families only found in the Northwest, and a number that are unique to tree sap communities. If anything should be added or subtracted to this list, please put a comment on this thread or contact me.
Nycteribiidae - Bat flies
DON'T HAVE LIVE
Tiny black acalyptrates in the Northeast, most often found at tree sap and fungus but rare. These are the only flies with a costal break near H but not one near Sc. Often the anterior margin of their wings are smoky or black. (Picture on ToL
Asteiidae John F. Carr 5/15/09
Tiny yellow or black acalyptrates with short R2+3, found at tree sap, rotten fungi, windows; widespread.
Small, rare, empidoids with stylate antennae, forked M1+2, large alula; western. I have collected them by sweeping along streams in canyons in CA, for instance Del Puerto Canyon. Not too rare just live in small localities.
Axymyiidae Tom Murray 5/13/08
Larvae live in partly submerged wood in slow moving streams, medium, black, bulky adults live for short while in early spring. Both are very bizarre looking. Eastern mountains.
Camillidae Jessica Holdenried 2/20/12
Tiny metallic black or green acalyptrates, larvae often live in animal burrows. Can be locally common if sweeping in an area with many burrows. Introduced to, and most common in, Eastern Canada. There are also rare native species in Arizona.
Canacidae- Canacinae- Beach/ surge flies
Tiny gray or black acalyptrates, somewhat like ephydrids, which scavenge in intertidal areas; Atlantic coast and California. This group was combined with Tethinidae recently so I removed it from the wish list.
Canthyloscelidae Karl Volkman 6/27/10
Small scatopsid-like flies whose larvae live in fungus-infested rotting wood; Northwest and California
Corethrellidae - Frog-biting midges Tom Murray 7/16/12
These flies look like chaoborids but have different wing venation and sparsely haired clypeus; same habitats as chaoborids and mosquitoes. Adults tend to suck blood of amphibians. Eastern and Southwestern
Cryptochetidae rob macfarlane 6/10/15
Tiny black acalyptrates with huge antennal flagellomeres, tiny aristae. Parasites of scale insects, introduced to California to control cottony cushion scale.
Curtonotidae Kyle Schnepp 4/14/10
Medium-sized gray or yellow-brown acalyptrates, widespread but rare, evidence suggests the species found here is a predator of grasshopper eggs.
Tiny bright yellow, white, black colored acalyptrates, related to Neriidae and Micropezidae. One species of Latheticomyia
has been collected at banana baits in the evening in Utah and Arizona, it kind of looks like a tiny neriid. Some experts split them into two families. Cypselosomatidae s.s. is restricted to Southeast Asia and Australia. The US species would belong to Pseudopomyzidae s.s. I guess we can resolve that if/when a photo gets posted!
Deuterophlebiidae - Mountain midges Kyle Schnepp on 3/8/13
Extremely distinct looking adults with very long antennae and creased, broad, fan like wings. Larvae in fast moving streams, with suction cups at ends of pseudopodia. Adults may live for only 15 minutes. Western mountains.
Diadocidiidae Jody Anderson 11/9/12
A family of fungus gnats with venation: bm-cu distinct, R2+3 absent. widespread
Ditomyiidae Rob Curtis 11/5/10
Another family of fungus gnats with venation as: bm-cu distinct, R2+3 long. mostly eastern
Dixidae - Meniscus midges Stephen Luk 6/24/08
Adults look somewhat like large chironomids but with an arched R2+3, giving the wing venation a distinct shape. Larvae are aquatic and stay near surface, adults mostly found on vegetation near larval habitat. Widespread.
Small yellow and black acalyptrates. Introduced to Florida (and California?) to control invasive Melaleuca
paperbark trees. The introduction was considered unsuccessful but flies may persist. (Picture on ToL
(Picture on diptera.info
Helcomyzidae Austin Baker on 1/18/13
Large, hairy, yellow-brown dryomyzid like fly with antennae separated, gena haired, mid tibia with posterior setae, C with spines, patterned wings. Coast of Oregon and Washington.
Heterocheilidae Joel Kits 11/6/10
Large, hairy, yellow-brown dryomyzid like fly with antennae separated, gena haired, mid tibia without posterior setae, C without spines, unpatterned wings. Alaska through Oregon, coastal.
Hilarimorphidae kallan 1/16/14
Rare, small brown flies, look like scenopinid or small bombyliid, often found on vegetation near gravel-bottomed streams; widespread.
Lygistorrhinidae Chris Hartley 7/25/15
Another family of fungus gnats with distinct, reduced venation (‘detached veins’) and long slender mouthparts. Southeastern.
Nycteribiidae, Bat flies
Wingless, dorsally flattened, obligate bat parasites, kind of look like spiders; widespread. We'll need someone who mist-nets bats to find these flies.
Oreoleptidae Emily McAuley 6/15/2017
Newly described family; only larvae have been collected in the wild from fast moving mountain streams and artesian wells (adults have been reared). larvae have long pseudopodia, adults looks somewhat like horse flies. Rockies in and around Idaho, Montana, and Alberta.
Pachyneuridae - Dark-winged fungus/ root gnats Lynette Schimming 3/7/09
Adults are very distinct looking, perhaps like a large fungus gnat or very odd crane fly. Larvae bore in rotten logs, adults can be swept from nearby vegetation. Larvae look like bibionid larvae with large pseudopodia. Oregon, Washington, and British Columbia.
Pelecorhynchidae Ken Schneider 7/12/08
Medium to large sized brown or black flies, look like horse flies but don’t suck blood. Adults of a few species feed at flowers. Larvae live in wet soil, are probably predaceous. Widespread but rare, more species in the West.
Periscelididae Kyle Schnepp 4/14/10
Small dark gray or blackish-brown acalyptrates often with banded legs and odd-shaped heads. Adults usually collected at tree sap. Widespread but with more species in the East.
Ropalomeridae Keith Bayless 4/11/10
Medium to large brownish hairy acalyptrate flies with triangular-shaped head with bulging eyes and unusually complete venation for an acalyptrate. Florida.
Streblidae - Bat flies Kyle Schnepp 4/14/10
Parasites of bats. Look more like flies than Nycteribiids do, but still bizarre looking; most are winged. Widespread in the West, only south from Kentucky in the East.
Medium to small dark acalyptrates with yellow legs. Look like Psilids. Adults can be found on rotten aspen, birch, and elms, which is the larval habitat. Kevin Barber says- Sweep vegetation in aspen canopy woods; they can be found in city parks! Widespread in Canada and Northeastern U.S.
From V- mostly Oriental, less common in the Palaearctic Region(3)
; Strongylophthalymia angustipennis
is transcontinental in NA (south to VA-NE-NM-BC)(4)
but other species exist in N. America.
Tanypezidae Matthew Bergeron 6/17/10
Medium-sized, long-legged flies, dark with patches of silver or gold hairs. Very rare, found in wet old growth forests in the East.
Tethinidae Kevin Hall 7/28/08
Small to tiny gray or black acalyptrates, often found on beaches or near estuaries. Can also be found near streams in the desert in the Southwest. Look somewhat like ephydrids or agromyzids, found on East and West coasts but more widespread in distribution and more species in the West.
Thaumaleidae - Solitary/ trickle midges Kirk C. Tonkel 1/27/13
Small gnats that look somewhat like black flies. The larvae are found in water running vertically over rocks. Mostly in pristine mountain habitats in the East with one species in British Columbia.
Vermileonidae - Worm lions Charley Eiseman 10/8/08
Adults are very distinct looking medium sized elongate yellow flies, maybe like a cross between a rhagionid and a leptogastrine asilid. Larvae make conical pits in the sand to trap insects much like ant lions. Here are pictures of vermileonids from Diptera.info
(note that the North American species do not have long proboscids). Southwest.