botfly

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botfly,

common name for several families of hairy fliesfly,
name commonly used for any of a variety of winged insects, but properly restricted to members of the order Diptera, the true flies, which includes the housefly, gnat, midge, mosquito, and tsetse fly.
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 whose larvae live as parasites within the bodies of mammals. The horse botfly secretes an irritating substance that is used to attach its eggs to the body hairs of a horse, mule, or donkey. When the animal licks off the irritant, the larvae are carried into the host's mouth and later migrate to the stomach. They attach themselves to the lining, where they feed until ready to pupate, and then drop to the ground with the feces. The larvae, which may cause serious damage to the digestive tract and weaken the animal, can be eliminated by a veterinarian. Sheep botflies lay their eggs in the nostrils of the host without alighting. The larvae work their way up into the head cavities causing fits of vertigo known as blind staggers; failure to eat because of irritability may result in death. Old World species of this family attack camels, elephants, horses, mules, donkeys, and deer. The warble flies, also called heel flies, or bomb flies, parasitize cattle and other animals. The larvae, called cattle grubs or cattle maggots, penetrate the skin of the host immediately after hatching; they migrate through the flesh, causing irritability, loss of weight, and decreased milk production, and then settle under the skin of the back, producing cysts, or warbles. Breathing holes made in the warbles by the larvae damage the hide. A species of human botfly found in Central and South America attaches its eggs to a bloodsucking mosquito that it captures and then releases. When the mosquito comes in contact with humans or other warm-blooded animals, the fly eggs hatch and the larvae fasten to the mammal's skin. The larvae bore into muscle tissue; infestation is called myiasis. For control methods, see bulletins of the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture. The botflies are classified in the phylum ArthropodaArthropoda
[Gr.,=jointed feet], largest and most diverse animal phylum. The arthropods include crustaceans, insects, centipedes, millipedes, spiders, scorpions, and the extinct trilobites.
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, class Insecta, order Diptera. Horse botflies are classified in the family Gasterophilidae; sheep botflies and warble flies are classified in the family Oestridae; the human botfly is classified in the family Cuterebridae. See insectinsect,
invertebrate animal of the class Insecta of the phylum Arthropoda. Like other arthropods, an insect has a hard outer covering, or exoskeleton, a segmented body, and jointed legs. Adult insects typically have wings and are the only flying invertebrates.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Early infestation by botflies (Philornis seguyi) decreases chick survival and nesting success in Chalk-browed Mockingbirds (Mimus saturninus).
We divided the breeding season into 15-day intervals and calculated the proportion of nests that were parasitized with botflies for each interval to examine if the seasonal increase in parasite prevalence during January and February was associated with a decrease in availability of nests.
Thirteen of 37 nests parasitized by botflies were depredated and excluded from analysis of nestling survival.
Many studies report parasitic botflies (Philornis spp.
lower humidity and higher temperatures) that may reduce their suitability for botflies.