Fig 1

DESCRIPTION: Length up to 12mm.  Also known as the Common Cleg Fly or the Notched Horn Cleg this attractive insect is best confirmed by the light reflective hairy eyes that make for a stunning sight, the mottled wings that are held tent-like over the body and the 1st antennal segment of the female that is notched near the tip. The hairs on the apical two thirds of the female palps are sparse and mostly black. The thorax is grey, with black longitudinal stripes. The abdomen has clearer bands at the end of each black segment. BEHAVIOUR: The larvae live in damp soil and rotten wood. The male feeds on nectar whereas the female is a real menace and the one that likes to nip and feed on human blood. Males like to rest on the heads of tall grasses near water and frequently use the same spots. Females seem to be far more prolific than males at any given site. DISTRIBUTION: Fairly common throughout the UK. HABITAT: Damp habitats, woodland edges and around horses and cattle. PERIOD:  May to October.

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