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Small-headed fly - Acroceridae - Taurus fly
Small-headed fly - Acroceridae - Taurus fly

Small-headed flies
Small-headed flies (Acroceridae), are a family of flies in the order Diptera, suborder Brachycera, infraorder Asilomorpha and in the superfamily Nemestrinoidea. . Scientific synonyms for Acroceridae are: Cyrtidae and Ogcodidae.
Small-headed flies, are commonly found throughout the world with the exception of some islands. They are divided into 3 subfamilies (Panopinae, Philopotinae and Acrocerinae), and 50 genera with a total of approximately 520 different species. While most species live in the tropics and subtropics, there are a total of 10 genera in Europe from all three sub-families. Some examples of genera of small-headed flies are: Acrocera, Astomella, Corononcodes, Cyrtus, Eulonchus, Lasia, Ocnaea, Ogcodes, Oligoneura, Opsebius, Philopota, Pterodontia and Turbopsebius. In Germany there are 8 known species while in North America there are approximately ten times as many.
Small-headed flies reach body lengths of 3 to 20 mm. Most species are medium in size. Their remarkably bumpy bodies are stocky, almost spherical and often have fine furry hairs (instead of bristles). Many types have a metallic shine. Others resemble wasps, bees or beetles (mimicry).
The heads of these flies are very small (hence their name ). The compound eyes of the males are almost joined? (holoptic eyes). On the sides of the thorax (chest) are large scales , under which the halteres (the balancing organ of a two-winged fly) are concealed. Some species have a very long, strong proboscis, which lies against the belly in the resting position, while in other species (eg Acrocera sanguinea) the proboscis is shortened.
Their ability to fly varies from species to species. While the adult small-headed flies eat flower nectar, their larvae live as parasites on spiders (Araneae). It is suspected that they also infect mites.
Eggs are laid either individually or in smaller groups on living or dead plants and can number as many as 5000. Occasionally, the eggs are also stored directly on the soil.

Approximately 4-6 weeks after oviposition (egg laying), the larvae hatch. At the end of their abdomen is an apparature by which they move ( like inchworms ). If they encounter a spider, they jump onto it and drill through the skin at the joint until they are inside the spider. They then live off the substances inside the body and hibernate in the hull of the empty spider until spring, when they pupate in the soil.

Further chapters of "Small-headed Flies"
- Taurus fly
Description of images / photos
Photography with Cameras
Nikon D3x, Nikon D300, Canon 50D
Image editing with Photoshop
1. Small-headed fly - Acroceridae - Taurus fly
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