Pictures of Flies and Other Observations
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Flies: The Life History of the Fly

Flies in General

Everyday Housefly
Tiger Mosquito, Yellow Jack, and the Panama Canal
Scourge of the Medfly
The Grey Flesh Fly (1913) by Jean-Henri Fabre
Beneficial, Medical Use of Maggots
Death of the Fly
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iStudy Flies - Flies in General: Significance and Importance



Significance and Importance

Mosquitoes are also well known for their spread of yellow fever, encephalitis, and elephantiasis. Flies that bite are especially harmful, because they can transmit disease-causing

tsetse fly
A female Tsetse fly
Image source: Peggy Greb, USDA

pathogens, such as when the mosquito spreads malaria. Parasitic worms that cause blindness are carried by black flies. [14] Worldwide in their distribution, swarms of flies seem to always appear. Sweat flies, houseflies, gnats, mosquitoes, black flies, sand flies, biting midges, horse flies, stable flies, tsetse flies, and robber flies -- to name only a few -- may move from the eyes to nose to mouth of person to person from wounds to sores from food to drink to feces transferring typhoid, dysentery, cholera, sleeping sickness, and West Nile virus -- to abbreviate the list. Is it any wonder that flies have often been considered the wrath or judgment of God?

On the other hand, second only to the bees and wasps, flies serve the useful function of pollination of flowers with nectar.
[15] Though the thought may be infrequent, some flies are useful: (1) tachinid flies parasitize (prey on) the harmful gypsy moth, and (2) the fruit fly (Drosophilia melanogaster) is widely used in experiments concerning the functioning of genes and chromosomes. [16] Professor Thomas H. Morgan of Columbia University pioneered the subject of heredity in the field of genetics using the tiny fruit fly (Drosophilia). Ease of handling, low expense, as well as, requiring only ten days to complete a generation, made the fruit fly especially suitable for scientists to observe several lifetimes of heredity. [17]


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