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I have been interested in nature for most of my life but since I retired I spend as much time as I can exploring the nature reserves and wildlife hotspots of my adopted home, Dorset in southern England. Whilst out I record what I see and take snaps where I can (I am no photographer!) and that forms the basis of my Nature of Dorset website. When I find something new I like to research it and write about it in my nature notes, it is how I learn and hopefully you might find my notes helpful as well!

This website is for the people of Dorset interested in wildlife and for people from elsewhere interested in the wildlife of Dorset!

25 April, 2016

Chrysopilus cristatus: the black snipe-fly

This is one of a sub-set of flies commonly known as snipe-flies although I have not been able to establish exactly why they should have this name. 
There are twelve snipe-flies in the British fauna and this one is the black-snipe fly (Chrysopilus cristatus) because it is mainly black whereas the others tend to be quite colourful. All have a tapered abdomen.
This particular species is one of the most common of the group and is found in damp meadows and woodland and this one was by the stream at Kingcombe in exactly this sort of habitat. The larvae live in leaf litter where they predate smaller insects like springtails and thrips.
Chrysopilus cristatus: the black snipe-fly