[Taxacom] Sargasso sea flies (Diptera)

Richard Heard Richard.Heard at usm.edu
Tue Aug 28 13:34:36 CDT 2007

There is a species chironomid that occurs in reef areas off southern Florida
and into the Caribbean to depths of 30+ meters.  The larva of this truly
marine species, which has an abbreviated adult stage, is greenish in color
rather than reddish as in most other types of chironomid larvae.
Unfortunately, I can't think of the genus name at the moment.  

One should do some light formalin washings of the Sargassum where the flies
are commonly observed and look in the residue for the larva.


-----Original Message-----
From: taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
[mailto:taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu] On Behalf Of Doug Yanega
Sent: Tuesday, August 28, 2007 11:57 AM
To: TAXACOM at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
Subject: Re: [Taxacom] Sargasso sea flies (Diptera)

>I have a ornithologist friend who is desperate to know what species 
>of fly he is finding in huge numbers in the Sargasso sea.  It
>apparently breeds there.  Might anyone suggest a taxon?

About the only fly family including multiple genuinely marine taxa I 
know of would be the Chironomidae, so that would be the logical prime 
suspect. I sort of doubt that Coelopids (seaweed flies) could live in 
open water, and, likewise, Ephydrids and Canaceids also seem a little 
iffy - but that would be my short list.


Doug Yanega        Dept. of Entomology         Entomology Research Museum
Univ. of California, Riverside, CA 92521-0314        skype: dyanega
phone: (951) 827-4315 (standard disclaimer: opinions are mine, not UCR's)
   "There are some enterprises in which a careful disorderliness
         is the true method" - Herman Melville, Moby Dick, Chap. 82

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