Eastern Treehole Mosquito My commercial gallery now has flies! Diptera photographs at alexanderwild.com I feel sort of embarassed at how few fly images I have, considering the importance of the group. That's something I'll try to remedy as we get into this summer's photography season.
A long-tongued horse fly takes a sip of nectar in Arizona's Chiricahua mountains. 100% crop of the same image. photo details: Canon 65mm MP-E 1-5x  macro lens on a Canon EOS 20D ISO 100, f/13, 1/250 sec, flash diffused through tracing paper
Rhagoletis fruit flies mating, Arizona photo details: Canon MP-E 65mm 1-5x macro lens on a Canon EOS 20D ISO 200, f/11, 1/200 sec, backlit by handheld strobe.
Nosodendron californicum - Wounded Tree Beetle California, USA From the Department of Really Obscure Insects, here's a beetle that few non-specialists will recognize.  Nosodendron inhabits the rotting tissue of long-festering tree wounds.  These beetles are not rare so much as specialized to an environment where few entomologists think to look.   If you can spot the telltale stains of an old wound on the trunks of large trees, you should be able to find Nosodendron.  They feed on the microbes- the yeast and bacteria- that grow in the sap leaking from the phloem. There are, in fact, whole…
A True Fruit Fly - Tephritidae Fruit flies are a family, Tephritidae, containing about 5,000 species of often strikingly colored insects.  As the name implies, these flies are frugivores.  Many, such as the mediterranean fruit fly, are agricultural pests. Drosophila melanogaster, the insect that has been so important in genetic research, is not a true fruit fly.  Drosophila is a member of the Drosophilidae, the vinegar or pomace flies.  They are mostly fungivores, and their association with fruit is indirect: they eat the fungus that lives in rotting fruit.  Some pointy-headed…
Can't devote much to blogging at the moment, but since we're feeling sorry for the dipterists this week here's a fly for you to look at: Gall Midge, Cecidomyiidae - California Maybe one of you fly folks could explain in the comments why Cecidomyiids are so cool.  Aside from looking like little fairies, that is. photo details: Canon MP-E 65mm 1-5x macro lens on a Canon D60 ISO 100, f/13, 1/200 sec, flash diffused through tracing paper