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(horseflies), a family of bloodsucking insects of the order Diptera. The body is 6–30 mm long. The mouthparts are fitted for piercing and stinging; the eyes occupy a fairly large part of the head. Of the approximately 3,000 species, about 250 are found in the USSR. Horseflies are particularly abundant in the swampy regions of Siberia. Only females suck blood; their pricks are painful and often draw blood. The males feed on nectar. Horseflies are active during the day in calm hot weather. They attack livestock, causing the animals to tire easily and to lose their productivity.
The cigar-shaped larvae have processes for locomotion on the abdominal segments. They develop in damp soil or in lakes and streams and feed on the larvae of other insects. Pupation occurs in soil; the pupa is obtect.
Species of the genera Tabanus, Chrysozona, and Chrysops are most widely distributed. Many horseflies transmit disease, for example, tularemia and anthrax. Control measures include the establishment of “pools of death,” that is, pools of petroleum, in places where the insects congregate. Repellents are used for individual protection.
REFERENCESOlsuf’ev, N. G. Slepni (Tabanidae). Moscow-Leningrad, 1937. (Fauna SSSR: Nasekomye dvukrylye, vol. 7, issue 2.)
Violovich, N. A. Slepni Sibiri. Novosibirsk, 1968.
Boshko, H. V. Hedzi. Kiev, 1973. (Fauna Ukrainy, vol. 13, no. 4.)
M. S. GILIAROV