Brown, Brian V. Entomology Section, Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, Los Angeles, California.
Gagne, Raymond J. Systematic Entomology Laboratory, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Washington, DC.
Last reviewed:December 2019
- Life cycle and biology
- Nutrition in adults
- Economic importance
- Related Primary Literature
- Additional Reading
An order of the class Insecta known as the true flies. The name Diptera is derived from the Greek di-ptera, for “two wings,” because the usual pair of insect hind wings is reduced to a pair of balancers or halteres (Fig. 1), which is a trait that distinguishes true flies from all other orders of the Insecta. The term fly also may form a part of the compound names of insects in many other orders, such as butterfly, mayfly and dragonfly. However, when separated from a descriptor (as in “house fly”), it is correctly applied only to the members of the Diptera.
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