Insect Love: Tiger crane flies

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Tiger crane flies (Diptera: Tipulidae: Nephrotoma sp.) photographed 08/31/2013 near Palmyra, Michigan.

The other day I came across this pair of tiger crane flies (Diptera: Tipulidae: Nephrotoma sp.) mating on my lawn. Although crane flies superficially resemble large, scary mosquitoes they do not bite. Most don’t even eat. Adults typically live just long enough to mate and lay eggs.

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Tiger crane flies (Diptera: Tipulidae: Nephrotoma sp.) photographed 08/31/2013 near Palmyra, Michigan.

Most tiger crane fly species are found in and around floodplain forests. Females of these species lay their eggs in damp vegetated areas. Once the worm-like larvae hatch they live among wet leaf litter and soil. After fattening up on decaying organic matter or roots they pupate into these completely different-looking adults to repeat the cycle.

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About Jeremy Sell

Science and nature nerd.
This entry was posted in Entomology, Insect Love and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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