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PJ Fly - Zelia vertebrata - male

PJ Fly - Zelia vertebrata - Male
Petit Jean State Park, Seven Hollows Trail, Conway County, Arkansas, USA
September 26, 2005
Size: 12-14mm
Very unusual flies. There were several on a pine trunk. And they were making flight loops out and landing head down on the trunk over and over. Very similar to some large flies that fell out of the treetops in a mini-battle in the same area this summer. They may be Tachinid flies but the tapering abdomen is odd and these are very long-legged flies. I still, unfortunately, have a large vacuum of Tachinid info to fill.

Moved from Zelia.

I now have the catalog and there are only three widespread eastern species in this genus which might occur in my state. Z. tricolor, vertebrata and zonata. Which it is, I am not sure.

Probably vertebrata
Probably Zelia vertebrata.

Tachinid, likely Zelia
Look at what people think to be Zelia. This one seems to have the same posture:

That looks like it, of course, there are tons of tachinids.

Patrick Coin
Durham, North Carolina

Easily the same genus. I was totally amazed at the two that fell from the treetops this summer. I could hear the long legs banging around as they tussled. Both 15mm long. Both broke when I loomed with my camera. These two were on the bottom portion of the tree trunk. One small, one large.

That is it, I am ordering the Tachi catalog today. And we will go from 'tons' to an eastern list. And still don't have the new NA spider catalog. Now 6 weeks late.