Australasian/Oceanian Diptera Catalog -- Web Version

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by Neal L. Evenhuis

Celyphidae are small to medium-sized flies, frequently shiny or metallic in color. They are easily distinguished by a conspicuous enlargement of the scutellum, which sits like a protective shell over the entire abdomen. The wings, when at rest, are folded beneath the scutellum. This trait, in combination with the others listed above, gives these flies a beetlelike appearance, hence their common name, beetle flies.

The biology of the family is poorly known. Sen (1921) gave life history notes for 2 species. Larvae are saprophagous, feeding on old and decaying vegetation. Adults are commonly collected in moist habitats along streams and rivers, and in grassy areas.

Approximately 90 species are known from the Oriental and Afrotropical regions. Only 2 species are known from the Australasian/Oceanian Regions, each representing the easternmost extension of their respective distributions. Celyphidae are most closely related to and have been treated as a subfamily of the Lauxaniidae by some authors (e.g., Griffiths 1972).
Refs.: Vanshuytbroeck (1959, key world spp.), Tenorio (1972, rev. Oriental spp.; 1977, cat. Oriental spp.).

Genus CELYPHUS Dalman

CELYPHUS Dalman, 1818: 72. Type species: Celyphus obtectus Dalman, 1818, mon.
obtectus Dalman, 1818: 73. "Ind. Or."; Solomon Is; widesp. Oriental Reg.


SPANIOCELYPHUS Hendel, 1914a: 92. Type species: Celyphus scutatus Wiedemann, 1830, orig. des.
philippinus Frey, 1941: 10. Philippines; PNG (Bougainville I); ?Cambodia.

This page last revised 27 August 1996