ferruginous tiger crane fly

(Nephrotoma ferruginea)

               
Conservation Status

IUCN Red List

not listed

ferruginous tiger crane fly

NatureServe

not listed

Minnesota

not listed

Occurrence

Common

Flight/Season

April to early October. Most common May to September. Two generations in the northeast: May through June and mid-August to mid-September.

Habitat

Suburbs, open woodlands, oak-hickory forests, riversides, grasslands, pasture lands, lawns, cultivated crops.

Size ½ to (12 to 16 mm) Photo by Alfredo Colon
 
Identification

With over 15,000 described species, the family Tipulidae (crane flies) is one of the largest families of true flies (Diptera). More than 1,600 species occur in North America. The subfamily Tipulinae (large crane flies) contains the largest crane flies. In North America, the vast majority of species are in the genera Tipula and Nephrotoma. The genus Nephrotoma (tiger crane flies) contains about 150 described species. The most common of these is ferruginous tiger crane fly (Nephrotoma ferruginea).

“Ferruginous” means reddish-brown or rust colored, but ferruginous tiger crane fly is more often described as orange in color.

The head is orange above. The snout is short and has a beak-like point. The lower jaws (maxillae) have sensory structures (palpi) attached. The last (apical) segment of each palp is antenna-like and very long, much longer than the subapical segment. There are two large, black, compound eyes and no simple eyes (ocelli). The antennae have 14 segments. They are entirely black except for the base, pedicel, first two segments, which are orange.

The exoskeletal plate covering the front part of the thorax (mesonotal prescutum) is orangish-yellow with three broad, orange, longitudinal stripes. The plate covering the back part (scutum) is orangish-yellow with two large orange spots, making it appear mostly orange. A distinct, V-shaped groove (transverse suture) on top near the wing bases separates the prescutum and scutum. There is a black spot at each end of the transverse suture.

The abdomen is long, slim, and brownish-yellow. The first six segments have a black spot above.

The legs are stilt-like, very long and very slender, and fragile, easily separated from the body.

The wings are very long and very narrow. Each wing has two anal veins that meet the inner margin.

 
Similar
Species

 

 
Larval Food

Decaying plant matter, grass roots

 
Adult Food

 

 
Life Cycle

 

 
Behavior

It rests with its wings held flat over its body.

 
Distribution Distribution Map  

Sources: 7, 24, 27, 29, 30.

 
Comments

Taxonomy
Attempts to segregate the subfamily Tipulinae into tribes has been unsuccessful due to the near constant addition of new species and genera.

 
Taxonomy

Order:

Diptera (gnats, mosquitoes, true flies)

 

Suborder:

Nematocera (long-horned flies)

 

Infraorder:

Tipulomorpha (crane flies)

 

Superfamily:

Tipuloidea

 

Family:

Tipulidae (large crane flies)

 

Subfamily:

Tipulinae

 
Subordinate Taxa

ferruginous tiger crane fly (Nephrotoma ferruginea ferruginea)

ferruginous tiger crane fly (Nephrotoma ferruginea surtularis)

 
Synonyms

 

 
Common
Names

ferruginous tiger crane fly

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glossary

Mesonotum

The principal exoskeletal plate on the upper (dorsal) part of the middle segment of the thorax of an insect.

 

Ocellus

Simple eye; an eye with a single lens. Plural: ocelli.

 

Scutum

The exoskeletal plate covering the forward (anterior) part of the middle segment of the thorax in some insects.

 

 

 

       
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Alfredo Colon
       
  ferruginous tiger crane fly   ferruginous tiger crane fly
       
  ferruginous tiger crane fly   ferruginous tiger crane fly
       
  ferruginous tiger crane fly   ferruginous tiger crane fly
       
  ferruginous tiger crane fly   ferruginous tiger crane fly
       
  ferruginous tiger crane fly   ferruginous tiger crane fly
       
MinnesotaSeasons.com Photos
   
  ferruginous tiger crane fly   ferruginous tiger crane fly
       
  ferruginous tiger crane fly   ferruginous tiger crane fly
       
       

 

Camera

     
Slideshows
   
  tiger crane fly (Nephrotoma ferruginea)
Bill Keim
 
  tiger crane fly (Nephrotoma ferruginea)  

 

slideshow

       
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Other Videos
 
       
       
       

 

Camcorder

         
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Alfredo Colon
8/26/2018

Location: Woodbury, MN

ferruginous tiger crane fly


     
     
 
MinnesotaSeasons.com Sightings
         

Lakeville, MN

 

 

Binoculars


Created: 7/13/2019

Last Updated:

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