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Genus Zodion

Diptera 6-05-10 01a - Zodion Myopine fly visiting fleabane - Zodion Fly - Zodion Wasp - Zodion Independence Day Fly on Daisy - Zodion Thick headed fly? - Zodion Scathophaga - Zodion Fly - Zodion
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Diptera (Flies)
No Taxon ("Acalyptratae")
Superfamily Sciomyzoidea
Family Conopidae (Thick-headed Flies)
Subfamily Zodioninae
Genus Zodion
Explanation of Names
Zodion Latreille 1797
30 spp. in our area
Key characters(1):
Head: Bristle-like arista positioned dorsally on flagellomere 1 (=3rd antennomere). Ocelli present. Proboscis bent only once near base, distal portion pointing forward. Palpus short.
Abdomen not noticeably constricted basally, terminal segments incurved downward and forward. Females with a short terminal ovipositor and a pad-like process (theca) below sternite 5.
Legs: Femora without spines ventrally.
Wings: Anal cell ("cup") long, much longer than 2nd basal cell ("bm"). Cell r4+5 short petiolate or open. (For terminology, see the wing diagram for the related genus Dalmannia)

Key to North American species in Camras (1944). Key to California species in(2)
Not all conopids have been associated with hosts; host information is given with the species descriptions if known. For an exhaustive list of the known associated conopid hosts please refer to Cole (1921), Freeman (1966), Smith (1966-67, 1969), Bohart (1938, 1941), Bohart & MacSwain (1939, 1940), Camras & Hurd (1957), Foote & Gittins (1961), Severin (1937), Kotrba (1997), Malfi et al. (2014), and Gibson et al (2014).
Life Cycle
Zodion species are parasitic on bumblebee workers, honey bees, Andrena, Nomia melanderi, and Metallic Green Bees Agapostemon(3)
"Zodion is a beautiful group of flies with some of the most striking colour patterns of conopids. The genus has had some taxonomic difficulties due to the highly variably characters of some species. Banks (1916) completed a revision with a user-friendly key, though the descriptions are wanting for detail and clarity and many of his new species were later synonymized. Species concepts have been refined with taxa placed in “Group sections” (obliquefasciatum group, fulvifrons group) by Camras (1943, 1944, 1945, 1954). To date, Camras provided some of the best descriptions and keys and some of his methodology have been employed here. Freeman (1968) effectively resolved discrepancies between Zodion auricaudatum, Zodion zebrinum, and Zodion albonotatum, which have historically caused confusion among taxonomists, including Camras who never once referenced Z. auricaudatum (now a valid species) (Freeman, 1968)."

Burt and Skevington, 2015
See Also
Genus Robertsonomyia - originally considered congeneric with Zodion

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Print References
Banks N. (1916) Synopses of Zodion and Myopa with notes on other Conopidae. Ann. ent. Soc. Am. 9: 191-200 (Full text)
Camras S. (1943) Notes on the North American species of the Zodion obliquefasciatum group (Diptera: Conopidae). Ent. News 54: 187-191 (Full text)
Camras, S. (1944). Notes on the North American species of the Zodion fulvifrons group (Diptera: Conopidae). Pan-Pacif. Ent. 20: 121-128. (Full Text)
Freeman B.A. (1968) Status of Zodion zebrinum, Z. auricaudatum, and Z. albonotatum (Diptera: Conopidae). Ann. ent. Soc. Am. 61: 276-278.
Howell J.F. (1961) Biology of Zodion obliquefasciatum (Macq.) (Diptera: Conopidae). Bull. Wash. agric. Exp. Stn 51: 1-33.
Parsons C.T. (1948) A classification of North American Conopidae. Ann. Ent. Soc. Am. 41: 223-246 (Full text)
Severin H.C. (1931) Zodion fulvifrons Say, a parasite of the honey bee. Ent. News 48: 243-244. (Full text)
Burt, Trevor (2015) Taxonomic revision of four Nearctic Conopidae (Insecta: Diptera) genera (Dalmannia, Roberstonomyia, Stylogaster and Zodion) with notes on all other Nearctic genera. (Full text)
Works Cited
1.Manual of Nearctic Diptera Volume 2
Varies for each chapter; edited by J.F. McAlpine, B.V. Petersen, G.E. Shewell, H.J. Teskey, J.R. Vockeroth, D.M. Wood. 1987. Research Branch Agriculture Canada.
2.The Conopid Flies of California
Sidney Camras and Paul D. Hurd, Jr. 1957. University of California Press.
3.Catalog of Hymenoptera in America North of Mexico
Karl V. Krombein, Paul D. Hurd, Jr., David R. Smith, and B. D. Burks. 1979. Smithsonian Institution Press.