All images on this website have been taken in Leicestershire and Rutland by NatureSpot members. We welcome new contributions - just register and use the Submit Records form to post your photos. Click on any image below to visit the species page. The RED / AMBER / GREEN dots indicate how easy it is to identify the species - see our Identification Difficulty page for more information. A coloured rating followed by an exclamation mark denotes that different ID difficulties apply to either males and females or to the larvae - see the species page for more detail.
Craneflies, Gnats & Midges
True flies (order Diptera) are an immense group with over 100,000 known species. They all have their hind pair of wings reduced to pin-shaped structures called halteres which act as gyroscopes to maintain balance in flight. Most feed on liquids, including nectar and blood.
The Dipterist's Forum offers a huge range of support for those interested in this group.
This group includes fly species that are in the dipteran sub-order Nematocera - the most ancient of the three fly sub-orders meaning they were the first to evolve. Fly species in these families all typically have reduced wing venation or wing veins that radiate to the margin and lack a closed anal cell. They are mainly lightly-built flies with long legs and long antennae.
Anisopodidae - Wood gnats
Mostly small, slim flies often found in moist habitats such as woodland.