The European species, Tipula maxima, is one of the largest crane flies, with wings conspicuously marked with patches of brown. It is a particular favourite of the trout, which will often come to the surface of the pond or lake to feed on these crane flies when they settle on the water in sufficient numbers. Body length up to 1.2 inches (3 cm)
common name: Crane flies (daddy-longlegs)
Class/subphylum: Insecta Hexapoda
Number of species: About 14,000 (about 1,600 US.
Size: From about 0.3 in (8 mm) to 2 in (5 cm)
Key features: Body usually long and slim; long legs wings may be clear or with smoky patterns; ocelli not present; face often drawn out into a definite snout; larva somewhat caterpillarlike with a definite head
Habits: Adults usually sit in the shade during the day, feeding occasionally at suitable flowers; many have the habit of “bobbing” the body up and down when disturbed larvae live in the soil, in water, or in dead wood
Breeding: Males may search actively for females or they may come together in mating swarms; eggs laid in the soil or in water, larvae aquatic or terrestrial
Diet: Adults take water and nectar, larvae feed on plants algae, dead wood, worms and larvae of other insects
Habitat: Forests, meadows, sides of streams and lakes, gardens, mountains, and the coast
Distribution: widespread around the world esnerinlly humid tropical areas.
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