Aspöck, Horst Department of Medical Parasitology, University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.
Aspöck, Ulrike Department of Evolutionary Biology, University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.
Last reviewed:August 2020
- Biology and ecology
- Distribution and biogeography
- Phylogeny, systematics, and classification
- Related Primary Literature
- Additional Reading
A small order of holometabolous medium-sized insects, commonly known as snakeflies, and one of the three orders of the superorder Neuropterida. Adult members of the order Raphidioptera are characterized by a striking appearance (Figs. 1 and 2): an elongate (frequently raised) prothorax (hence, another common name is camel-neck flies); translucent wings [6–20 mm (0.24–0.8 in.)], with loose venation and a distinct pterostigma (opaque brownish or yellowish) at the apex of the fore and hind wings; and the females with a long ovipositor (a specialized structure for depositing eggs). Snakeflies represent one of the smallest insect orders. So far, there are approximately 230 known species, belonging to two families: Raphidiidae with about 200 species and Inocelliidae with about 30 species. See also: Endopterygota; Insecta
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