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Diptera - True Flies



 Kingdom: Animalia
 Phylum: Arthropoda
 Subphylum: Hexapoda
 Class: Insecta
 Order: Diptera

Horse Fly There are about 120,000 species in this order. True flies are found all over the world, except for in Antarctica. True flies are found in a variety of habitats and come in a variety of shapes and forms! Many of the species in this order, like mosquitoes, transmit diseases to man. This family includes mosquitoes, house flies, gnats, fruit flies, and horse flies.

True flies, like all insects, have a segmented body with a head, thorax, and abdomen. True flies have long or short antennae, large eyes, and two sets of wings. In fact, the name diptera means two wings! Only the forewings of true flies are used for flight. The hind wings are stubby, knob-like structures called halteres. The halteres are useless for flight, but they vibrate during flight and help the fly keep its balance!

Most true flies have a proboscis or mouthpart that is used to lap or suck up liquid food. Most true flies eat plant juices or decaying organic matter. Some species, like the mosquito, eat blood!