Root Maggot Fly – Family Anthomyiidae

Root Maggot Fly – Family Anthomyiidae / Crocus Flowers
The family name comes from the Greek "anthos" (flower) + "myia" (fly). Adult flies in this family feed on nectar and pollen, and  larvae (maggots) feed on flower roots, or decaying organic matter.
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Root Maggot Fly

"The Anthomyiidae (412 North American species) are medium-sized nondescript flies that are taken in large numbers in Old Field sweeps. Most are phytophagous feeding on roots or other plant tissue. This family contains some economically important pests primarily in the genus Hylemya. Two subfamilies are recognized: FUCELLIINAE and ANTHOMYIINAE" — From the Insects of Cedar Creek
Adult Female Root Maggot Fly
Adult Female Root Maggot Fly

Adult male root maggot fly on crocus flower
Adult male on crocus flower. These flies are some of the earliest spring insects.

Adult root maggot flies are important flower pollinators
Adult root maggot flies are important flower pollinators

crocus flowers

Crocus is the generic name of hardy, corm-forming herbs belonging to the iris family, Iridaceae. The genus comprises about 80 species originally native to the Mediterranean region and to Southwest Asia. They are grown primarily as ornamentals for their beautiful, usually single flowers of brilliant color; however, the stigmas, or pollen-receiving parts, of the flowers of Crocus sativus produce saffron, an important orangy colorant and flavoring.

Crocuses may be divided into two main groups; spring-flowering and fall-flowering. Because their bright-colored flowers–ranging from pure yellow through lavender and blue to white–appear early in spring before most other flowers, the spring crocuses are the most popular. The bulblike corms of autumn-flowering crocuses should be planted during July and August. Spring-flowering corms should be planted not later than November. The corms are set 8 to 10 cm (about 3 to 4 in) deep in well-drained soil and are dug up and replanted every 3 to 4 years, after the leaves die down.

Flies of North America – Order Diptera. Flies are prevalent in virtually all habitats, with over 16,000 species in North America. Flies can be distinguished from all other insects in that they only have one pair of normal wings. Most flies have compound eyes and mouthparts adapted for piercing, lapping or sucking fluids.
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