Rust Fly – Loxocera cylindrica
Order Diptera / Family Psilidae
Live adult rust flies photographed at Bridgeton, Missouri.
Rust flies are so-called for the “rust” their feeding on plants induces. Discoloration and mortality results from the fly’s proboscis piercing the cell wall.
This damage can be extreme and occur over large areas of foliage.
The Rust Flies consist of 34 North American species, primarily in savanna habitats. Species of Loxocera have a long slender flagellomere exceeding the length of their face. Species of Psila are generally dark-bodied with pointy heads and abdomens.
Larvae are root or stem borers or occur under bark.
Rust fly is seen feeding on plant fluids pumped out of the cells through the fly’s mouthparts.
Online since 2002