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Family Lauxaniidae

Fly - Poecilominettia ordinaria Fly - Camptoprosopella Sapromyza brachysoma - female fly - Minettia - female lauxaniid - Xenochaetina Homoneura Neogriphoneura sordida? Homoneura
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Diptera (Flies)
No Taxon ("Acalyptratae")
Superfamily Lauxanioidea
Family Lauxaniidae
Explanation of Names
Lauxaniidae Macquart 1835
136 spp. in 30 genera in our area(1), ~1900 spp. in ~170 genera total(2)(3)
most under 6 mm
Small flies of woodlands, yellowish-brown or black. Wings often clear, but some groups, such as Homoneura, have patterned wings. Most(?) species have iridescent reddish/purplish or greenish eyes.
Can be distinguished from other muscoids by the complete subcosta, no oral vibrissae and the postverticals converging(1).
Lauxaniidae versus Drosophilidae: The easiest character to look for is the strong bristles on the frons (top of the head right above the eye). In most of our lauxaniids, there will be two strong bristles above each eye, both facing backwards. Drosophilids usually have one strong bristle facing backward, often a weaker one facing backward just in front of the strong one, but usually a fairly strong one facing forward as well. (Comment by Terry Wheeler)
Many drosophilids have long rays on the arista of the antenna, while in most lauxaniids the arista is bare or has very short hairs.
Some helpful notes. Go to Flickr and hover the mouse over the image:
Lurking Fly Day Friday
Woodlands, forests. Moist shady places. Larvae occur in decaying vegetation.
Adults may visit flowers
Life Cycle
Larvae reported to feed on decaying vegetation in moist areas.
Print References
Works Cited
1.American Insects: A Handbook of the Insects of America North of Mexico
Ross H. Arnett. 2000. CRC Press.
2.USDA Diptera Site (now closed)
3.Order Diptera Linnaeus, 1758. In: Zhang Z.-Q. (ed.) Animal biodiversity: An outline of higher-level classification...
Pape T., Blagoderov V., Mostovski M.B. 2011. Zootaxa 3148: 222–229.
4.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.
5.A conspectus of Neotropical Lauxaniidae (Diptera: Lauxanioidea)
Gaimari S.D., Silva V.C. 2020. Zootaxa 4862: 1-217.