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What you need to know on #WorldCraneFliesDay 🤓

Crane Flies 😇: Innocent Insects Done Wrong

Judged by their large size, poor cane flies are inadverdenty terrorizing humans simply because they look like enlarged mosquitoes!

"That inch-long, gangly-legged insect that sneaks into your house and bounces around the walls and ceiling is a crane fly," writes Leslie Mertz in an article for Entomology Today.

 

Here's what you need to know 📢

 

CRANE FLIES DO NOT BITE

Crane flies are harmless. 👌

Crane fly specialist, Matthew Bertone, PhD, explains in an article for Entomology Today, “They just don’t have the mouthparts for it. [...] none are blood-feeding, and none of them attack people.”

 

CRANE FLIES DO NOT EAT MOSQUITOES

"Despite rumors to the contrary, [crane flies are] neither a predator of mosquitoes nor a colossal mosquito", writes Leslie Mertz for Entomology Today.

Crane flies ONLY drink nectar 🌷 to survive.

"In fact, many of the adult crane flies eat very little, if at all," says crane fly specialist, Jon Gelhaus, Ph.D. (to Leslie Mertz for Entomology Today). 

May contain: mosquito, invertebrate, insect, and animal

 

CRANE FLIES ARE SIGNS OF A HEALTHY ECOSYSTEM

Crane flies emerge on warmer days 🌞, after rain ☔ from damp places (grass, soil, wet logs, etc.) and only live for a few days as an adult. 

"Crane flies spend most of their time as larvae living underwater in streams, the edges of ponds, within wet logs, or in other damp places, and then they emerge as adults for a quick mating spree before dying," writes Leslie Mertz for Entomology Today.

As adults, they serve as nutritious bugs for birds 🐦 to eat (ahh, the circle of life). 

May contain: insect, invertebrate, and animal

Mosquitoes 🦟 VS. Crane Flies

Overall, many people incorrectly nickname crane flies as, "Mosquito Hawks" or "Mosquito Eaters", or even "Giant Mosquitoes". But when it comes down to it, mosquitoes and crane flies couldn't be more different

Crane flies emerge from damp places (grass, soil, wet logs, etc.) when it's warm 🌞, and always after a good rain ☔. Their size is larger than a quarter 📏 and way bigger than a mosquito. Most importantly though, crane flies don't bite people, therfore they pose no risk to diseases.

In comparison, mosquitoes emerge from stagnant water 💦, are significantly smaller (about the length of the tip of one's thumb 👍🏾), and they bite people!

Mosquitoes are a threat to all communities because they transmit disease while sucking our blood (🦠 = yikes!).

 

🤓 Want to learn more about crane flies?

 

Continue learning: How to Get Rid of Mosquitoes?

🖋 Written by Ally Gaspar, Outreach Assistant