British Insects: the Families of Diptera


L. Watson and M. J. Dallwitz


Formerly Platypezidae.

Adult insects. Very small (black); hairy bodied (thinly clothed with black hairs). Antennae 3 segmented; nearly as long as the head; ‘modified’ (the first segment somewhat cupular); with a non-annulated terminal segment; aristate; the arista apical (from the thid segment, hairy). The third segment somewhat elongated (elongate-conical). Ptilinal suture absent or weakly defined. Ocelli present; 3 (on a tubercle). Ocellar bristles present. Eyes of the male asymmetric, nearly or quite connected above the antennae. The maxillary palps 1 segmented (shorter than the labium); porrect. Vibrissae absent (the mouth hairy). Wing veins reaching the margin 7. Wing vein 7 falling short of the margin. Wings without a discal cell; without a sub-apical cell; with a closed anal cell. The anal cell short. The costa unbroken. The costal vein not markedly thickened. Sub-costa apparent; reaching the costa independently of vein 1. The leading edge veins not noticeably stronger than the rest. Wing vein 7 present; falling short of the wing margin. Wings with the lower calypter much reduced or absent. Hind tibiae without strong bristles in the basal 4/5. The hind tarsi normal. Abdomen not constricted basally. Visible abdominal segments 6.

Larvae and pupae. The larvae acephalic. The pupae enclosed within a puparium.

Comments. Distinguishable from Platypezidae by the marked thickening of the costal vein.

Classification. Suborder Brachycera; Division Muscomorpha Aschiza; Superfamily Platypezoidea.

British representation. 1 species in Britain. Genera 1; Opetia nigra.

Illustrations. • Opetia nigra (Lonchoptera-like Opetia: B. Ent. 489). • Opetia nigra: B. Ent. 489, legend+text. • Opetia nigra: B. Ent. 489, text cont.. • Opetia nigra (from Walker).

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.’.