Joe Botting's picture

Unknown fly

Observed: 29th June 2013 By: Joe BottingInvertebrates expert
DSC_0147
Description:

Several of these among grasses in a wet meadow; about 8 mm long (estimate). I wondered at Opomyzidae, but haven't found anything to match yet...

Identifications
Species interactions

No interactions present.

Comments

jeremyr's picture

typo "killin"

sorry I should have at least added an apostrophe after that, or written 'Snail-killing..'

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Joe Botting's picture

I'll forgive you...

...since you've gone and pointed me in the right direction. Many thanks. :o)

Joe Botting's picture

Limnia

Thanks Ian - I was about to suggest unguicornis as an option, but it's a shame we can't be quite sure on the species. Handsome fly, anyhow.

Joe Botting's picture

Interesting discussion...

Looking into this a bit more, it seems that there is debate as to whether the rare paludicola is actually a real species anyway:
http://www.diptera.info/forum/viewthread.php?thread_id=32383

Would you agree? It sounds like a case for a tentative ID of unguicola on that basis...

ophrys's picture

Limnia

I don't know enough to comment on that!

unguicornis is a common species, but I have a couple of females which look right for paludicola, based on the mid-thoracic stripe. Looking at the Yorkshire list, for where I am, paludicola is recorded for most Yorkshire VCs. Anyway, you need to know it is a female and then you need a specimen which is obvious, which this is not...so I would leave as Limnia. You need specimens to be sure, photos don't tell the whole story!

Ian
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Joe Botting's picture

Fair enough

Will leave it as Limnia then. If someone eventually shows that paludicola doesn't actually exist and is just unguicola in disguise, then maybe I'll come back to it... ;o)

I know what you mean about photos not telling the whole story, of course - amongst the hoppers and psyllids there are a lot that do need to be looked at down a microscope as well. However, I do think it's always worth examining whether species can be separated photographically even when the keys suggest not - that is certainly true among a lot of delphacids, for example. And after all, that's what iSpot is all about. :D

ophrys's picture

Photos

Yes, I totally agree with you. The trouble with a single photo is you only get the one angle, though. Look at this one from a different angle and the stripe might look a different colour, be broader or narrower and so on.

Incidentally, it's unguicornis, not unguicola. If it were unguicola, it would presumably have to live inside a horse's hoof! ;)

It's a good picture of a nice fly...most Sciomyzids on here are rather fuzzy and distant!

Ian
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