(Chloropidae), a family of brachycerous flies. Their bodies are 1 to 4 mm long, and they may be gray, black, or yellow with black stripes. Chloropid flies are found in all parts of the world. There are over 1,500 species and about 400 species in the USSR. The flies live in grass in meadows, fields, swamps, and forest borders. In autumn they often swarm into houses. Most larvae live in the stems, on the blossoms, or in the spikes of cereals and sedge; sometimes they form galls on the stems. The larvae may kill the plant.
Some chloropid flies, such as frit flies, gout flies, and Meromyza saltatrix, do great damage to wheat, rye, and oats (mainly in nonchernozem and foothill regions), as well as to the shoots and seeds of fodder grains. The larvae of some species live in dead plants, and a few develop in the egg sacs of spiders and praying mantises, in the egg packets of locusts, in the passageways of bark beetles, and on root aphids. Useful species destroy root aphids on beets. In the tropics some species of chloropid flies, called eye flies, are carriers of microorganisms causing various infections and infestations in man and animals, such as conjunctivitis.
E. P. NARCHUK