British Insects: the Families of Diptera


L. Watson and M. J. Dallwitz


~Empididae. Including Ocydromiinae and Tachydromiinae, formerly referred to Empididae.


Adult insects. Very small to small; slender-bodied to robustly-built; stilt-legged, or not stilt-legged. Antennae 3 segmented; ‘modified’; with a non-annulated terminal segment; aristate, or not aristate; the arista apical. Ptilinal suture absent or weakly defined. Ocelli present; 3. Eyes rounded, well separated (and usually nicked in the inner margin, near the bases of the antennae). The maxillary palps 1 segmented, or 2 segmented; porrect. Wings with a discal cell (Tachydromiinae), or without a discal cell (usually, in the rest); without a sub-apical cell; with a closed anal cell, or without a closed anal cell. The anal cell when present, relatively long to short. Sub-costa apparent, or absent or only dubiously identifiable (e.g., Tachypeza?); if recognisable, terminating blind (e.g., Ocydromia, Tachydromia,Platypalpus, Hybos), or joining vein 1 well short of the costa (e.g., Syneches). Wing vein 6 present, or absent; reaching the wing margin, or falling short of the wing margin. Wings patterned, or unpatterned. Tibiae spurred (associated with capturing prey), or without spurs. Feet without a triple pad.

Larvae and pupae. The larvae hemicephalic. The pupae without a puparium.

Classification. Suborder Brachycera; Division Asilomorpha; Superfamily Empidoidea.

British representation. 175 species in Britain. Genera 20; Anthalia, Bicellaria, Chersodromia, Crossopalpus, Drapetis, Euthyneura, Hybos, Leptopeza, Ocydromia, Platypalpus, Oedalea, Oropezella, Stilpon, Symballophthalmus, Syndyas, Syneches, Tachydromia, Tachypeza, Trichina, Trichinomyia.

Illustrations. • Hybos grossipes: B. Ent. 661. • Hybos grossipes: B. Ent. 661, legend+text. • Hybos grossipes: B. Ent. 661, text cont.. • Bicellaria, Euthyneuria, Leptopeza, Ocydromia, Oedalea, Platypalpus, Trichina (from Walker). • Chersodromia, Crossopalpus, Drapetis, Hybos, Platypalpus, Stilpon, Tachydromia (from Walker). • Crossopalpus curvipes (Tachydromiinae: Sea-coast Drapetis: B. Ent. 397). • Crossopalpus curvipes (detail: B. Ent. 397). • Crossopalpus curvipes (dissections: B. Ent. 397). • Crossopalpus curvipes: B. Ent. 397, legend+text. • Crossopalpus curvipes: B. Ent. 397, text cont.. • Tachydromia arrogans (Tachydromiinae: Black-banded Tachydromia: B. Ent. 477). • Tachydromia arrogans: B. Ent. 477, legend+text. • Tachydromia arrogans: B. Ent. 477, text cont..

To view the illustrations with detailed captions, go to the interactive key. This also offers full and partial descriptions, diagnostic descriptions, differences and similarities between taxa, lists of taxa exhibiting or lacking specified attributes, and distributions of character states within any set of taxa.

Cite this publication as: ‘Watson, L., and Dallwitz, M.J. 2003 onwards. British insects: the families of Diptera. Version: 1st January 2012.’.