Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada
Clickable Guide
Moths Butterflies Flies Caterpillars Flies Dragonflies Flies Mantids Cockroaches Bees and Wasps Walkingsticks Earwigs Ants Termites Hoppers and Kin Hoppers and Kin Beetles True Bugs Fleas Grasshoppers and Kin Ticks Spiders Scorpions Centipedes Millipedes

Calendar
Upcoming Events

Information about the 2019 BugGuide Gathering in Louisiana, July 25-27

Discussion, insects and people from the 2018 gathering in Virginia, July 27-29

Photos of insects and people from the 2015 gathering in Wisconsin, July 10-12

Photos of insects and people from the 2014 gathering in Virginia, June 4-7.

Photos of insects and people from the 2013 gathering in Arizona, July 25-28

Photos of insects and people from the 2012 gathering in Alabama

Photos of insects and people from the 2011 gathering in Iowa


TaxonomyBrowse
Info
ImagesLinksBooksData

Genus Bittacus

Hangingfly - Bittacus pilicornis Crane Fly - Bittacus strigosus - male Hangingfly - Bittacus - female CA Hanging Fly 1 - Bittacus chlorostigma - female Hanging fly - Bittacus - male hangingfly - Bittacus - male Hangingfly - Bittacus Bittacus
Classification
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Mecoptera (Scorpionflies, Hangingflies and Allies)
Family Bittacidae (Hangingflies)
Genus Bittacus
Explanation of Names
Bittacus Latreille 1805
Greek bittakos (βιττακος), later psittakos 'parrot' -- apparently for the long "beak"
Numbers
By far the largest genus of the family, with 8 spp. in our area and >120 worldwide (~50 in Africa, ~40 in Asia, 25 in C. & S. America, 2 in Europe, and 1 in Australia)(1)
Size
12-15 mm
Identification
Keys to spp. in(2)(3)
Range
Worldwide; in NA, more diverse in the east, with just one Pacific species (B. chlorostigma: OR-CA) and one restricted to KS-TX-NM (B. texanus); 5 spp. are widely distributed over e. US, B. occidentis west to AZ; B. strigosus northwest to MT; the rest reach areas west of the Mississippi to NE-TX), with three ranging into Canada (two along the se. border and one west to MB)(4)(2)
Habitat
Woodlands
Season
May-Oct in NC(5)
Food
Predatory on smaller insects, esp. dipterans.
Life Cycle
Eggs often laid on clumps of moss. Larvae resemble caterpillars, hunt for prey (and consume decaying matter?) there.
Works Cited
1.Scorpionflies, hangingflies, and other Mecoptera
Byers G.W. 2002. The Kansas School Naturalist 48(1).
2.The Mecoptera, or scorpionflies, of Illinois
Webb D.W., Penny N.D., Marlin J.C. 1975. Illinois Natural History Survey Bull. 31: 251–316.
3.Mecoptera of Ontario
Cheung D.K.B., Marshall S.A., Webb D.W. 2006. Canadian Journal of Arthropod Identification No. 1, 28.
4.World checklist of extant Mecoptera species
5.Insects of North Carolina
C.S. Brimley. 1938. North Carolina Department of Agriculture.