horsefly

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horsefly,

common name for the large 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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 of the family Tabanidae. Male horseflies feed on pollen and nectar, but the females suck blood as well and are common pests of animals and sometimes of humans. The bites of many species are very painful. The larger horseflies, e.g., the mourning horsefly and the 1-in. (2.5-cm) black horsefly, belong to the genus Tabanus; the smaller and more common banded horseflies, with black, brown, or yellow bodies and brilliantly colored eyes, are members of the genus Chrysops. The deerflies, which carry the diseases anthraxanthrax
, acute infectious disease of animals that can be secondarily transmitted to humans. It is caused by a bacterium (Bacillus anthracis) that primarily affects sheep, horses, hogs, cattle, and goats and is almost always fatal in animals.
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 and tularemiatularemia
or rabbit fever,
acute, infectious disease caused by Francisella tularensis (Pasteurella tularensis). The greatest incidence is among people who handle infected wild rabbits.
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, and in Africa, a filarial worm infestation, belong to this group. Horseflies are most abundant in hot weather. The eggs are laid on plants or stones close to water. The somewhat flattened 1-2-in. (1.3-cm) larvae have fleshy protuberances on each body segment, aiding in locomotion; they live in water or in moist earth and feed on snails and on other insect larvae. Horseflies 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, family Tabanidae. 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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horsefly

any large stout-bodied dipterous fly of the family Tabanidae, the females of which suck the blood of mammals, esp horses, cattle, and man