Thursday, May 24, 2007

Crane Fly closeups on the Shellpot Creek

Is there an entomological expert out there that can tell me exactly what type of crane fly I have flying around Shellpot creek? I always thought these things were mosquito killers, but I have learned that the adults pictured do not kill mosquitoes, and only the larvae of some species eat mosquito larvae.

Here is a top view

And here is a view of its underside as it perched so nicely on a glass door for me.

That pointy part at the end of the fly is not a stinger, it is an ovipositor and is harmless. My best guess of what species they are is derived from looking through the extensive pictures available on the Carnegie Museum of Natural History Crane Fly site (of course the Internet has many sites dedicated to crane flies!), is that these are Tipula (Yamatotipula) caloptera or Tipula (Yamatotipula) furca. My crane fly has the same striped wings and their abdomens have brown stripes.

Beyond that I am a little bugged out by looking through the hundreds of pictures to find my crane fly.

1 comment:

The Virtual Ranger said...

Apologies - my transatlantic tipulid knowledge is more or less non-existent. I'd agree with you that it's a tipulid of some sort - after that you're on your own!