Midges, Crane Flies
Midges are easily mistaked for mosquitoes, but most of this family of flies do not bite with the exception of the biting midge also called no-seeums. However, the large swarms cause annoyance as they move into residential and industrial areas.
- To get rid of midges:
- net-winged midges, gall midges, biting midges (no-seeums), phantom midges, non-biting midges, muffleheads, mountain midges, meniscus midges, dung midges, solitary midges, crane flies, blind mosquitoes, fuzzy bills
Blephariceridae (net-winged midges)
Cecidomyiidae (gall midges)
Ceratopogonidae (biting midges aka no-seeums): See No-Seeums
Chaoboridae (phantom midges)
Chironomidae (non-biting midges aka muffleheads)
Deuterophlebiidae (mountain midges)
Dixidae (meniscus midges)
Scatopsidae (dung midges)
Thaumaleidae (solitary midges)
- Found Worldwide.
- Poupulations are dominant near lakes, streams, and rivers.
- 1/8 - 1/2 inch (3.5 - 12mm)
- Distinguished from mosquitoes by the lack of the long piercing beak called a proboscis.
- They also do not have scales on the wings.
- Colors range from gray, black, brown, light green, or orange depending on species.
- Males have fuzzy antennae.
- The entire life cycle is approximately 1 month.
- Eggs hatch in about 72 hours.
- The larvae drop to the bottom of the water and feed on debris for about 4 weeks.
- Pupation usually lasts about 48 hours and rise to the surface just before emergence as an adult.
- Short life span of about a week.
- Many live less than a day
- Like mosquitoes, midges breed in the water.
- Typically open water with rich organic matter like lakes, streams, ponds, drainage ditches, and around aquatic vegetation.
- Well watered soils or standing water areas like gutters, flower pots, and bird baths are also potential breeding locations.
- Little is known of the feeding habits of the adults.
- Larvae are scavengers and feed on debris at the bottom of the water.
- They typically congregate around their breeding area, but are attracted light and will fly into structures.
- May fly up to a 1/4 of a mile
- Mainly a nuisance pest as they swarm in large masses and leave excretory waste.
- Piles of dead midges may accumulate in unwanted places causing economic loss to public places causing patrons to go elsewhere.
- These large swarms also may contribute to traffic hazards.
- Midges may be annoying to humans but are very beneficial as they are an important food source for fish and aquatic insects.
- They are one of the most abundant organisms in aquatic habitats.