Syrphidae

Larva of Microdon, copyright Aaron Schusteff.


Belongs within: Cyclorrhapha.
Contains: Eristalini, Cerioidini, Syrphus.

The Syrphidae, hover flies, are a group of often strikingly coloured flies, a number of which mimic bees or wasps in their appearance. Adult hover flies are important pollinators, while their larvae are predatory or detritivores; larvae of the Eristalinae are the 'rat-tailed maggots' that live in anoxic mud. Larvae of the genus Microdon are found living in ant colonies, either feeding on ant larvae or scavenging on debris; they are dome-shaped and were mistaken for molluscs when first discovered.

Characters (from Thompson et al. 2010): Small to large flies (body length 4–25 mm). Fully winged; males usually holoptic; females and some maled dichoptic; three ocelli present; antenna short to elongate, with distinct scape, pedicel, first flagellomere, and apical style or dorsal to subbasal arista; head bristles absent, bristles rarely present on thorax; plumula (fringed posteroventral extension of subalar sclerite) short to long, rarely absent. Wing with large basal cells r, bm and cup; apical cell (r4+5) closed; spurious vein often present between radial and medial fields; calypter usually well developed. Abdomen slender or petiolate to elongate or oval. Third instar larvae and puparia with anal segment usually bearing single sclerotised breathing tube; anus on anteroventral margin of anal segment, not separated from it by transverse integumental fold; dorsum of prothorax with longitudinal folds (occasionally inconspicuous).

<==Syrphidae [Syrphiae]
    |--Microdon WT11 [Microdontidae, Microdontinae KS05]
    |    |--M. abnormis TRZ10
    |    |--M. cothurnatus BW09
    |    |--M. diaphanus TRZ10
    |    |--M. fergusoni CM91
    |    |--M. fulgens TRZ10
    |    |--M. latifrons K01
    |    |--M. manitobensis VT87
    |    |--M. modestus CM70
    |    |--M. piperi TRZ10
    |    |--M. ruficrus TRZ10
    |    |--M. tristis WT11
    |    `--M. variegatus N91
    |--Eristalinae KS05
    |    |  i. s.: Alipumilio TRZ10
    |    |           |--A. femoratus TRZ10
    |    |           `--A. nigrocoeruleus TRZ10
    |    |         Orthonevra pulchella TRZ10, VT87
    |    |         Myolepta varipes TRZ10, VT87
    |    |         Quichuana angustiventris TRZ10
    |    |         Chalcosyrphus TRZ10
    |    |           |--C. (Chalcosyrphus) depressus VT87
    |    |           `--C. (Neplas) TRZ10
    |    |                |--C. (N.) pauxillus VT87
    |    |                `--C. (N.) schildi TRZ10
    |    |         Criorhina TRZ10
    |    |         Nausigaster TRZ10
    |    |           |--N. meridionalis TRZ10
    |    |           `--N. punctulata TRZ10
    |    |         Callicera TRZ10
    |    |           |--C. erratica TRZ10
    |    |           `--C. poultoni TRZ10
    |    |         Milesia TRZ10
    |    |           |--M. nigra TRZ10
    |    |           |--M. pulchra TRZ10
    |    |           `--M. virginiensis VT87
    |    |         Spilomyia TRZ10
    |    |         Ornidia TRZ10
    |    |           |--O. major TRZ10
    |    |           `--O. obesa TRZ10
    |    |         Copestylum TRZ10
    |    |         Sterphus (Sterphus) stimulans TRZ10
    |    |         Xylota barbata TRZ10, VT87
    |    |         Lepidomyia micheneri TRZ10
    |    |         Palpada TRZ10
    |    |           |--P. mexicana TRZ10
    |    |           `--P. scutellaris TRZ10
    |    |         Habromyia coeruleithorax TRZ10
    |    |         Meromacrus loewi TRZ10
    |    |         Lycopale TRZ10
    |    |           |--L. chrysotaenia TRZ10
    |    |           `--L. wygodzinskyi TRZ10
    |    |         Teuchocnemis lituratus VT87
    |    |--Eristalini KS05
    |    |--Cerioidini TRZ10
    |    |--Merodon K01 [Merodontini TRZ10]
    |    |    |--M. equestris VT87
    |    |    `--M. pumilus Macquart 1849 K01, E12
    |    |--Sericomyia (Arctophila) TRZ10 [Sericomyiina, Sericomyini KS05]
    |    |    |--S. (A.) fairmanorum TRZ10
    |    |    `--S. (A.) meyersi TRZ10
    |    `--Rhingia WT11 [Rhingiini TRZ10]
    |         |--R. nasica WT11
    |         |--R. nigra TRZ10
    |         `--R. rostrata L02
    `--Syrphinae TRZ10
         |--Syrphus M90
         |--Trichopsomyia TRZ10
         |--Dasysyrphus TRZ10
         |--Xanthandrus mexicanus VT87
         |--Pseudodoros clavatus TRZ10
         |--Ischiodon VT87
         |--Parasyrphus tarsatus VT87
         |--Meliscaeva cinctella VT87
         |--Leucopodella marmorata VT87
         |--Doros aequalis VT87
         |--Xanthogramma flavipes VT87
         |--Sphaerophoria contigua VT87, TRZ10
         |--Leucozona (Leucozona) lucorum VT87
         |--Scaeva pyrastri VT87
         |--Eriozona (Megasyrphus) erraticus VT87
         |--Toxomerus [Toxomerini] TRZ10
         |    |--T. geminatus TRZ10
         |    `--T. politus TRZ10
         |--Baccha VT87
         |    |--B. elongata VT87
         |    `--B. norina MM96
         |--Didea VT87
         |    |--D. alneti K01
         |    `--D. fuscipes VT87
         |--Epistrophe VT87
         |    |--E. (Epistrophe) grossulariae VT87
         |    `--E. (Epistrophella) emarginata VT87
         |--Melangyna VT87
         |    |--M. (Melangyna) lasiophthalma VT87
         |    `--M. (Austrosyrphus) novaezealandiae M83
         |--Dideomima VT87
         |    |--D. coquilletti VT87
         |    `--D. vockerothi TRZ10
         |--Allograpta TRZ10
         |    |--A. exotica TRZ10
         |    |--A. neotropica TRZ10
         |    `--A. obliqua TRZ10
         |--Melanostoma VT87
         |    |--M. bellum TRZ10
         |    |--M. fasciatum BWT03
         |    `--M. mellinum K01
         |--Eupeodes TRZ10
         |    |--E. (Eupeodes) VT87
         |    |    |--E. (E.) americanus VT87
         |    |    `--E. (E.) volucris VT87
         |    `--E. (Lapposyrphus) lapponicus VT87
         |--Ocyptamus TRZ10
         |    |  i. s.: O. wulpianus BR09
         |    `--O. (Mimocalla) TRZ10
         |         |--O. (M.) bonariensis TRZ10
         |         `--O. (M.) tristani TRZ10
         |--Chrysotoxum TRZ10
         |    |--C. bicinctum K01
         |    |--C. derivatum TRZ10
         |    |--C. festivum K01
         |    |--C. integre VT87
         |    `--C. sibiricum K01
         |--Platycheirus TRZ10
         |    |--P. brunnifrons Nielsen 2004 F05
         |    |--P. caesius Nielsen & Stuke 2004 F05
         |    |--P. clypeatus K01
         |    |--P. quadratus TRZ10
         |    `--P. stegnus VT87
         |--Paragus TRZ10
         |    |--P. algirus Macquart 1849 E12
         |    |--P. (Pandasyophthalmus) haemorrhous TRZ10
         |    |--P. lacerus K01
         |    |--P. numida Macquart 1849 E12
         |    |--P. serratus TRZ10
         |    `--P. tibialis K01
         `--Salpingogaster VT87
              |--S. (Salpingogaster) TRZ10
              |    |--S. (S.) nigra TRZ10
              |    `--S. (S.) punctifrons TRZ10
              `--S. (Eosalpingogaster) TRZ10
                   |--S. (E.) cochenillivorus TRZ10
                   `--S. (E.) nepenthe VT87

Syrphidae incertae sedis:
  Helophilina Becker 1922 KS05
  Episyrphus balteatus WT11
  Syritta TRZ10
    |--S. flaviventris TRZ10
    `--S. pipiens T90
  Eristalinus TRZ10
    |--E. aenus TRZ10
    `--E. punctulatus ZS10
  Metasyrphus G84
  Neocnemodon G84
  Eumerus BM76
    |--E. quadrimaculatus G89
    |--E. sabulonum K01
    `--E. strigatus TRZ10
  Volucella T81
    |--V. bombylans T81
    `--V. obesa BM76
  Chrysogaster VT87
    |--C. antitheus VT87
    `--C. chalybeata K01
  Brachyopa VT87
    |--B. (Brachyopa) notata VT87
    `--B. (Hammerschmidtia) ferruginea VT87
  Ascia dispar K01
  Melithreptus K01
    |--M. scriptus K01
    `--M. strigatus K01
  Chilosia K01
    |--C. antiqua K01
    |--C. velutina K01
    |--C. viduata K01
    `--C. zetterstedti K01
  Pipizella K01
    |--P. maculata K01
    `--P. virens K01
  Pipiza VT87
    |--P. noctiluca K01
    `--P. quadrimaculata VT87
  Lycastrirhyncha TRZ10
    |--L. nitens TRZ10
    `--L. willistoni TRZ10
  Cheilosia TRZ10
    |--C. capillata TRZ10
    `--C. sialia VT87
  Cepa alex [=Xela alex] TRZ10
  Nothomicrodon aztecarum Wheeler 1924 TRZ10
  Rhopalosyrphus TRZ10
    |--R. carolae VT87
    `--R. guentherii TRZ10
  Paramicrodon TRZ10
  Argentinomyia rugosonasus TRZ10
  Aristosyrphus TRZ10
  Mixogaster TRZ10
    |--M. conopsoides TRZ10
    |--M. delongi TRZ10
    |--M. mexicana TRZ10
    `--M. orpheus TRZ10
  Paragodon paragoides TRZ10
  Cacoceria cressoni TRZ10
  Mutillimyia auricaudata TRZ10
  Allobaccha CM91
  Simosyrphus CM91
  Temnostoma VT87
  Neoascia VT87
    |--N. distincta VT87
    `--N. metallica VT87
  Palumbia inflata VT87
  Hiatomyia VT87
  Hadromyia (Hadromyia) grandis VT87
  Psilota VT87
    |--P. rubra CM70
    `--P. thatuna VT87
  Pelecocera pergandei VT87
  Chamaesyrphus willistonii VT87
  Sphegina VT87
    |--S. (Sphegina) keeniana VT87
    `--S. (Asiosphegina) petiolata VT87
  Cynorhinella VT87
    |--C. bella VT87
    `--C. longinasus VT87
  Tropidia quadrata VT87
  Merapioidus villosus VT87
  Brachypalpus VT87
    |--B. (Brachypalpus) oarus VT87
    `--B. (Crioprora) femoratus VT87
  Somula decora VT87
  Pyritis kincaidii VT87
  Heringia [incl. Cnemodon] VT87
  Ferdinandea VT87
  Lejota VT87
  Blera badia VT87
  Sphecomyia VT87
  Pocota bomboides VT87
  Pterallastes thoracicus VT87
  Ceria L02
    |--C. clavicornis L02
    `--C. conopsea [=Mulio conopseus] L02
  Paramixogaster icariiformis R78

*Type species of generic name indicated

REFERENCES

[BM76] Bohart, R. M., & A. S. Menke. 1976. Sphecid Wasps of the World. University of California Press: Berkeley.

[BR09] Borkent, A., & G. Rotheray. 2009. Key to Diptera families—larvae. In: Brown, B. V., A. Borkent, J. M. Cumming, D. M. Wood, N. E. Woodley & M. A. Zumbado (eds) Manual of Central American Diptera vol. 1 pp. 157–191. Ottawa, NRC Research Press.

[BWT03] Bowie, M., S. Wratten & J. Tylianakis. 2003. An introduction to entomological research on Kowhai Farm—the Heinz Wattie’s Organic Farm at Lincoln University. Weta 25: 18–23.

[BW09] Buck, M., N. E. Woodley, A. Borkent, D. M. Wood, T. Pape, J. R. Vockeroth, V. Michelsen & S. A. Marshall. 2009. Key to Diptera families—adults. In: Brown, B. V., A. Borkent, J. M. Cumming, D. M. Wood, N. E. Woodley & M. A. Zumbado (eds) Manual of Central American Diptera vol. 1 pp. 95–156. Ottawa, NRC Research Press.

[CM70] Colless, D. H., & D. K. McAlpine. 1970. Diptera (flies). In: CSIRO. The Insects of Australia: A textbook for students and research workers pp. 656–740. Melbourne University Press.

[CM91] Colless, D. H., & D. K. McAlpine. 1991. Diptera (flies). In: CSIRO. The Insects of Australia: A textbook for students and research workers 2nd ed. vol. 2 pp. 717–786. Melbourne University Press: Carlton (Victoria).

[E12] Evenhuis, N. L. 2012. Publication and dating of the Exploration Scientifique de l’Algérie: Histoire Naturelle des Animaux Articulés (1846–1849) by Pierre Hippolyte Lucas. Zootaxa 3448: 1–61.

[F05] Fernández, J. 2005. Noticia de nuevos táxones para la ciencia en el ámbito Íbero-Balear y Macaronésico. Nuevos táxones animales descritos en la península Ibérica y Macaronesia desde 1994 (IX). Graellsia 61 (2): 261–282.

[G84] Gauld, I. D. 1984. An Introduction to the Ichneumonidae of Australia. British Museum (Natural History).

[G89] Gestro, R. 1889. Viaggio ab Assab nel Mar Rosso dei signori G. Doria ed O. Beccari con il R. Avviso «Esploratore» dal 16 Novembre 1879 al 26 Febbraio 1880.—IV. Coleotteri. Annali del Museo Civico di Storia Naturale di Genova, Serie 2a, 7: 5–72.

[K01] Kertész, K. 1901. Legyek [Dipteren]. In: Horváth, G. (ed.) Zichy Jenő Gróf Harmadik Ázsiai Utazása [Dritte Asiatische Forschungsreise des Grafen Eugen Zichy] vol. 2. Zichy Jenő Gróf Harmadik Ázsiai Utazásának Állattani Eredményei [Zoologische Ergebnisse der Dritten Asiatischen Forschungsreise des Grafen Eugen Zichy] pp. 179–201. Victor Hornyánszky: Budapest, and Karl W. Hierseman: Leipzig.

[KS05] Kotthoff, U., & U. Schmid. 2005. A new fossil hoverfly (Insecta, Diptera: Syrphidae) from the Randeck Maar (Early Miocene, south-west Germany). Palaeontology 48 (5): 1091–1096.

[L02] Latreille, P. A. 1802. Histoire Naturelle, générale et particulière des crustacés et des insectes vol. 3. Familles naturelles des genres. F. Dufart: Paris.

[M83] Martin, N. A. 1983. Miscellaneous observations on a pasture fauna: an annotated species list. DSIR Entomology Division Report 3: 1–98.

[M90] McAlpine, J. F. 1990. Insecta: Diptera adults. In: Dindal, D. L. (ed.) Soil Biology Guide pp. 1211–1252. John Wiley & Sones: New York.

[MM96] Mound, L. A., & R. Marullo. 1996. The thrips of Central and South America: an introduction (Insecta: Thysanoptera). Memoirs on Entomology, International 6: 1–487.

[N91] Norris, K. R. 1991. General biology. In: CSIRO. The Insects of Australia: A textbook for students and research workers 2nd ed. vol. 1 pp. 68–108. Melbourne University Press: Carlton (Victoria).

[R78] Richards, O. W. 1978. The Australian social wasps (Hymenoptera: Vespidae). Australian Journal of Zoology, Supplementary Series 61: 1–132.

[T81] Teskey, H. J. 1981. Key to families—larvae. In: McAlpine, J. F., B. V. Peterson, G. E. Shewell, H. J. Teskey, J. R. Vockeroth & D. S. Wood (eds) Manual of Nearctic Diptera vol. 1 pp. 125–147. Research Branch, Agriculture Canada.

[T90] Teskey, H. J. 1990. Insecta: Diptera larvae. In: Dindal, D. L. (ed.) Soil Biology Guide pp. 1253–1276. John Wiley & Sones: New York.

[TRZ10] Thompson, E. C., G. E. Rotheray & M. A. Zumbado. 2010. Syrphidae (flower flies). In: Brown, B. V., A. Borkent, J. M. Cumming, D. M. Wood, N. E. Woodley & M. A. Zumbado (eds) Manual of Central American Diptera vol. 2 pp. 763–792. NRC Research Press: Ottawa.

[VT87] Vockeroth, J. R., & F. C. Thompson. 1987. Syrphidae. In: McAlpine, J. F. (ed.) Manual of Nearctic Diptera vol. 2 pp. 713–743. Research Branch, Agriculture Canada.

[WT11] Wiegmann, B. M., M. D. Trautwein, I. S. Winkler, N. B. Barr, J.-W. Kim, C. Lambkin, M. A. Bertone, B. K. Cassel, K. M. Bayless, A. M. Heimberg, B. M. Wheeler, K. J. Peterson, T. Pape, B. J. Sinclair, J. H. Skevington, V. Blagoderov, J. Caravas, S. N. Kutty, U. Schmidt-Ott, G. E. Kampmeier, F. C. Thompson, D. A. Grimaldi, A. T. Beckenbach, G. W. Courtney, M. Friedrich, R. Meier & D. K. Yeates. 2011. Episodic radiations in the fly tree of life. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA 108 (14): 5690–5695.

[ZS10] Zborowski, P., & R. Storey. 2010. A Field Guide to Insects in Australia 3rd ed. Reed New Holland: Sydney.

Last updated: 12 August 2017.

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