Mesembrina meridiana (L.)   
Mid-day Fly

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Hexapoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Diptera – true flies

British distribution: Widespread.
World distribution: No information at the time of writing, though evidently widespread in Europe.

Mesembrina meridiana, mating pair
Mesembrina meridiana, mating pair
Mesembrina meridiana, mating pair, Wigtownshire, May 2005.

Mesembrina meridiana is a conspicuous and attractive fly, to be seen in cattle-rearing areas, basking on open ground and visting flowers for their nectar.

It is a member of the family Muscidae, subfamily Muscinae, and so related to the House Fly, Musca domestica, and to some species of biting fly, though it is not in any way a nuisance species itself. It can be considered a beneficial predator. Eggs are laid in cattle dung, in which the larvae are carnivorous, feeding on other fly larvae.

This is a very distinctive and easily recognised large fly, black, with conspicuous, bright orange wing-bases.

Mesembrina meridiana, wing venation
Mesembrina meridiana - wing veining
The veining is characteristic of a number of flies in the subfamily Muscinae, in that of the main veins running the length of the wing, vein 4 is strongly bowed back towards vein 3 at the distal end of the wing. (Vein numbering is from the fore-margin of the wing.)

A colour plate and limited information are given in:
•   Colyer, C.N., & Hammond, C.O. (1968). Flies of the British Isles, ed. 2, Frederick Warne & Co., London.

© A.J. Silverside
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