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Moth Fly


This morning I noticed two of these little flying insects in the woods beside the large lake in Reading University grounds.  They were tiny: their wing-span was about 7mm.  The black and yellow banding and their hairy bodies suggested to me that they may be bee-mimics, but surely they are too small to fool birds into thinking they might be bees?

At first I assumed these little insects must be moths because of their hairy wings, but I couldn't find anything like them on the UK Moths website.  It was only after quite a bit of Googling that I came across a reference to moth flies, a group of primitive dipteran flies.  Their classification is, as far as I can take it:

  • Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
  • Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
  • Class Insecta (Insects)
  • Order Diptera (Flies)
  • Suborder Nematocera (Non-Brachycera)
  • Infraorder Psychodomorpha
  • Family Psychodidae (Moth Flies and Sand Flies)
  • Subfamily Psychodinae (Moth Flies)
  • Genus: ?
  • Species: ?

A few years ago we had similar little black flies living in the overflow of our bathroom hand-basin.  I didn't take any photos of them but they must have been drain flies which are very similar.  However, they all disappeared when I squirted some bleach down the overflow, and have never reappeared.

Reader Comments (1)

This happened to me! Except they KEEP. COMING. BACK. It's driving me nuts. I squished the first, then I'd find another... And another... And another. It's so disgusting when I'm brushing my teeth and one flies up and onto my tooth brush, in my hair, or on my face.
April 5 | Unregistered CommenterElmo

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