Abdomen — The body of a robber fly is divided into three sections: head, thorax, and abdomen. The abdomen is the most posterior of these. In Laphriini it is composed of ten segments, although the last several are segregated in the male to form the hypopygium, and in the female to form the ovipositor. The anterior seven segments in the male and eight segments in the female are usually all that is visible other than the terminalia; together these constitute what is usually termed the abdomen, although morphologically they are just the anterior portion. In most Laphriines this portion is also somewhat flattened in cross section, as fits animals which often appress their bodies close to bark. In a few species this flattening has been taken even further, apparently to increase the resemblence of the fly to much stockier bumble bees. In the male the eighth segment is invariably much reduced and hidden, and the ninth and succeding are twisted 180 degrees. Although oriented normally in the female, the segments beyond the eighth are telescoped to fit within the eighth. In one genus in the male the seventh segment is both reduced and much modified to interlock direcly with the ninth, leaving only six that are visible.
Acrostical bristles — The rows of mesonotal bristles between the dorsocentrals — the two median rows of bristles of the thorax.
Acrostical hairs — Hairs lying between the dorsocentral bristles.
Acrostical setulæ; — Very short hairs between the dorsocentral bristles.
Adventitious veins — Veins occuiring in abnormal positions. Rare in the Laphriini; never permanent.
Ædeagus — Part of the male terminalia: the penis and its sheath.
Alula — A lobe at the base of the wing posteriorly.
Anal cell — The cell lying between the fifth and sixth veins (Cu).
Anal crossvein — The crossvein closing the anal cell apically — (Cu1) of Comstock-Needham.
Anal lobe — The basal part of the wing behind the anal vein.
Anal vein — The sixth longitudinal vein. The second anal is usually absent or represented by a fold.
Anepisternite — The mesopleura.
Antennae — In the Laphriini these are invariably three-segmented, porrect, and apparently rigid. The insertion of the antennae separates the face below and front above. The antennae are presumed to have a sensory function, although in the Laphriini it is unlikely that this is tactile, unless it is to register air flow.
Anterior crossvein — The short crossvein connecting the third and fourth longitudinal veins on the basal half of the wing — (r-m).
Apicad — Toward the apex.
Apical cell — The first posterior cell — the space between the third and fourth longitudinal vein beyond the anterior crossvein (Rs).
Apical scutellars — The apical pair of marginal bristles on the scutellum. The term is loosely applied and often means the sub-apical scutellars, in cases where the true apicals are absent.
Apical spurs (of tibia) — Short, rather stout bristles often present on the under or ventral surface of the tibiae. The number varies, and may differ on different pairs of legs.
Appendage (vein) — The presence of a short vein at the angle of a bend. "Stump" vein.
Arcuate — Arched like a bow.
Auxiliary vein — The subcostal vein; that vein lying between the costa and first vein, often absent. (Subcostal; mediastinal.)
Axillary cell — The area behind the anal vein.
Axillary lobe — The area behind the anal vein. See axillary cell.
Axillary vein — The second anal vein when this is present (2nd A).
Basad — Toward the base.
Basitarsus — The basal segment of the tarsus.
Bilobed — Divided or split into two parts.
Calypter (Calypters, Calypterae) — See squamae.
Capitate — Enlarged at the apex.
Carinate — Ridged or bearing a raised line or keel.
Caudad — Toward the posterior end of the abdomen or hind margin of the wing.
Caudal — Pertaining to the apex of the abdomen.
Cephalad — Toward the front of the head.
Cell — A space in the wing bounded by veins. In the Laphriini the marginal cell is always closed and stalked, as is the fourth posterior cell. The third or lower basal cell is also always closed in the wing margin.
Cheeks — The space below the eyes. Sometimes termed the peristoma. In the Laphriini usually with a pronounced "beard".
Chitinized — Hardened or horn-like: not membranous. Sclerotized.
Clavate — Clubbed or enlarged at the apex.
Claws — Tarsal claws, borne on the fifth (or apical) tarsal segment.
Coarctate — Narrowed between the base and apex at some point.
Compressed — Flattened from side to side — laterally compressed. The Laphriini are defined by a laterally compressed proboscis.
Connate — Fused and immovable.
Constricted — Narrowed.
Corneous — Horn-like in texture or appearing so.Costa — See costal vein.
Costal cell — The cell between the costa and subcostal or auxiliary vein.
Costal vein — The vein extending along the front margin of the wing.
Crossveins — There are five typical crossveins in the wings: humeral, anterior, posterior, discoidal, and anal (The equivalents of these in the Comstock-Needham system are, in order, — h; r-m; m; M3 and Cu.). In addition to these there is the subcostal crossvein (Sc2), and there may be one or more veins simulating crossveins. The base of the third vein, base of posterior branch of the fourth vein and the base of the branches of the fifth vein may simulate crossveins.
Cruciate — Crossing each other.
Cubitus — Fifth longitudinal vein.
Decumbent — Depressed; hanging down. In Laphriini often applied in the first sense to pile on the thorax and abdomen. On the latter this pile is also additionally often arranged in whorls. Decumbent pile is probably more for portraying color than for thermoregulation. The genus Chrades is partially defined by the presence of decumbent scale-like hairs on the face.
Decussate — Crossing or cruciate.
Depressed — Flattened dorsoventrally, contrasting with compressed.
Dichoptic — Eyes separated by the front. Both males and females of all asilids are dichoptic.
Discal cell — A cell on the disc of the wing, lying between the fourth and fifth veins. Always closed in the Laphriini.
Discal crossvein — The vein separating the discal and second basal cells. (See discoidal crossvein.) (M3 of Comstock-Needham system).
Discal scutellars — Bristles on the disc of the scutellum.
Discoidal crossvein — The vein separating the discal and second basal cells. (See discal crossvein.) (Ms of Comstock-Needham system).
Dorsad — Toward the upper surface.
Dorsal — Pertaining to the upper surface of the body.
Dorsocentrals — Dorsocentral bristles of the thorax.
Dorsopleural suture — See notopleural suture.
Dorsum — Upper surface. Refers to thorax and abdomen.
Epaulet — The first "scale" at the base of the costa. It is haired and is followed by a bare "scale", the basicosta.
Empodium — A bristle, hair or pad borne on the apical tarsal segment between the pulvilli.
Epiphysis — A lappet-like process or lobe.
Epistoma — The anterior oral margin.
Eyes — The compound eyes. More-or-less flattened in the Laphriini. Each eye is composed of several thousand facets.
Face — The front of the head between the mouth and the antennae.
Facets — The divisions comprising the compound eyes. In the Laphriini, these facets are larger on the flat, anterior portion of the eye.>
Femur (femora) — The long part of the leg nearest the thorax, but separated from the thorax by the coxa and trochanter. The thigh.
Fifth longitudinal vein — The vein running along the posterior side of the second basal cell, and of the discal cell; two-branched in the Laphriini. The second branch separates the fourth and fifth posterior cells. (Cu1; postical)
First basal cell — A cell lying between the first, second and third and the fourth longitudinal veins on the basal half of the wing.
First vein — The vein lying immediately behind the auxiliary vein. (R and Ri)
Fourth longitudinal vein — The vein arising near the base of the wing separating the two basal cells and bordering the discal cell anteriorly; branched, the posterior branch partly closing the discal cell. (Medial, M1, 2, 3; discoidal)
Fourth posterior cell — The cell in the wing bounded anteriorly by the third branch of the fouth vein (M3), basally by the discal or mediocubital crossvein (m-cu), and posteriorly by the fifth vein or first branch of the cubitus (Cu1). In the Laphriini this cell is always closed and stalked.
Front — The space between the eyes lying above the antennae and limited by the vertex or top of the head.
Frontal orbits — The space contiguous to the eyes on the front.
Fronto-orbital bristles — The orbitals or orbital bristles.
Gena (nae) — The cheek.
Genitalia — The external sexual organs together with the adjacent parts. Terminalia is a better word.
Gibbous — Puffed out. In Laphriini the face is strongly gibbous, with the pronounced portion bearing strong bristling which is termed the mystax.
Glabrous — Without hairs; smooth.
Halteres — Appendages arising on the posterior of the pleura, with a long stem and apical knob. Vibrated up and down like tiny wings, of which they are undoubtedly the rudiments, specialized for another function. Removal renders a fly unable to control its flight, suggesting that this function is sensory, informing the fly of its position in the air, through acting as gyroscopes. In the Laphriini the halteres are apparently silent; it is possible they they may be able to register sound.
Humeral crossvein — A crossvein situated near the base of the wing and extending from the costa to the auxiliary or subcostal vein and continuing to the first vein.
Humeri — The anterior corners of the mesonotum usually more or less well marked.
Hyaline — Transparent.
Hypopleura — The space below the posterior spiracle and above the posterior coxae.
Hypopleural bristles — Bristles on the hypopleura In the Laphriini these bristles are lacking.
Hypopygium — The ædeagus together with the surrounding and shielding sclerites, and the segments of which they form a part. The hypopygium ranges from a tightly-integrated capsule to a more loose and elongate package. In the Laphriini it is composed of the ninth and succeeding abdominal segments, which are rotate or twisted 180 degrees from their original position just after eclosion, e.g. in a non-teneral adult the epandrium is ventral and the hypandrium is dorsal. In the Laphriini the epandrium is prominent, undivided, and bowl-like whereas in contrast the hypandrium is inconspicuous and triangular. The two elongate, dorsal lobes or plates that look a bit like (but don't function as) "claspers" are actually the basistyli, and have nothing in common with the similar-looking dorsal epandrial halves in some other subfamilies, as for example the Asilinae. Additionally in the Laphriini the eighth segement is reduced and rotate to some degree, and in one genus the seventh segment is reduced and modified as well. One or both of these segments connecting the hypopygium with the forward abdomen are often NOT visible in unrelaxed pinned specimens, giving the impression that the abdomen is composed of six or seven segments tipped by a tightly approximated hypopygium. In some species at least when at rest the abdomen is curled downward and the tip of the hypopygium either contacts the substrate or nearly does so, suggesting that it may be used as a brace. Possibly (nobody really knows) it could also be used in the ariel manipulation of large prey.
Infra-squamal setulae — Fine hairs below the point of attachment of the squamae.
Intercalary vein — A term applied to the posterior branch of the fourth vein where its base partly closes the discal cell (M2).
Interfrontal (bristles or hairs) — Hairs or bristles on the frontal vitta.
Interfrontalia — The frontal vitta.
Intra-alar bristles — Bristles situated behind the suture and between the supra-alar and dorsocentral bristles.
Jowls — The cheeks, behind the depressed anterior part. Sometimes termed the peristoma.
Labellæ — The lips of the proboscis. Supposed to be the modified labial palpi. In Laphriini much reduced to a few hairs at the tip of the proboscis.
Large crossvein — The crossvein closing the discal cell; posterior crossvein (m and M3).
Lateral — At, toward, or pertaining to the sides of the body.
Macrotrichia — The larger microscopic hairs on the surface of the wings. The wings are bare in North American Laphriini.
Marginal cell — The cell Iving between the first and second longitudinal veins (R1). This cell is closed and petiolate in the Laphriini.
Marginal scutellars — Bristles situated close to or on the margin of the scutellum.
Media — The fourth longitudinal vein.
Medial — Pertaining to the media or middle.
Median — Along the middle.
Mesad — Toward the middle.
Mesonotum — The dorsum of the mesothorax or the main part of the back. Sometimes termed the mesoscutum. According to morphological usage the divisions of the mesonotum are, from front to rear, prescutum, scutum, scutellum and postscutellum. There is a distinct, membranous suture between the scutum and the scutellum, such as one expects to find between true sclerites.
Mesopleura — A so-called pleurite or sclerite of the pleura bounded above by the mesonotum, in front by the propleura, below by a move or less distinct suture and behind by a suture extending down from in front of the wings. The so-called suture separating the mesopleura and sternopleura is merely a fold leaving an exterior furrow.
Mesoscutum — See mesonotum.
Mesosternum — The under side of the mesothorax.
Mesothorax — The second and largest segment of the thorax. The wings and second pair of legs arise from this segment.
Metacephalon — The area behind the proboscis extending up toward the neck.
Metanotal slopes — Swellings on the sides of the metanotum or its sloping sides (pleurotergite).
Metanotum — The dorsum of the metathorax, lying behind the scutellum. (According to recent morphological usage this is the postnotum or postscutellum and is part of the mesonotum: the true metanotum is found only in the lower Diptera, as Psychodidse.)
Metapleura — The part of the metathorax above the hypopleura and outside of the metanotum. It is a poorly defined area and not really separable from the metanotum.
Metasternum — The under side of the metathorax, situated behind the middle coxae and extending to behind the posterior coxae.
Metatarsus — A term applied to the basal segment of the tarsi.
Metathorax — The third segment of the thorax. The posterior legs and halteres arise from this segment.
Microtrichia — The smaller abundant hairs of the wing. When these are present the wing is said to be villous. To my knowledge the wing is free of microtrichia in the Laphriini.
Neuration — The arrangement of the veins of the wing.
Notopleura — A depression, more or less triangular, situated immediately before the transverse suture and behind the humeri.
Notopleural suture — The suture extending from the humeri to the base of the wings.
Notum — The dorsal surface; particularly of the thorax.
Ocellar bristles — Bristles arising from the ocellar tubercle.
Ocellar tubercle — The swelling on which the ocelli are situated.
Ocelli — The simple eyes, located on the front, usually near the vertex.
Occipital cilia — The row of bristly hairs behind the eyes.
Occipital fringe — The fringe of fine hairs behind the eyes.
Occiput — The back of the head. Morphologically the subtriangular area limited by the vertex between the eyes and the neck.
Orbit — The part of the head immediately surrounding the eyes.
Ordinary crossvein — Anterior or small crossvein, r-m (Schiner).
Ovipositor — The female genitalia with the adjacent parts, composed of several segments. Telescopic in several genera, and apparently modifed for depositing eggs in the openings of beetle galleries in wood.
Palpi — The maxillary palpi. Two-segmented in Laphriini
Pectus — The under side of the thorax.
Petiolate — Attached by a stalk or stem. The abdomen of some South American genera of Laphriini are more-or-less petiolate. It is likely these flies are mimics of polybyiine wasps.
Phytophagous — Feeding on plants. The larvae of Laphriini are supposedly xylophagous (feeding on wood); this may or may not be correct. It is just as likely that they feed on fungi growing in the wood.
Pilose — Having long, fine hair, usually dense. The term is loosely applied to include any hair that is not coarse.
Pleurites — A term applied to the sclerites or sections of the pleura.
Pleurotergite — The hypopleura.
Pollen — A fine, dust-like substance on the integument.
Pollinose — Covered with "dust" or "bloom".
Posterior calli — The swellings at the posterior corners of the mesonotum (Posterior callosities).
Posterior cells — The cells on the apical part of the wing lying between the third and fifth veins, exclusive of the discal cells (R5 to Cu1). In the Laphriini the fourth posterior cell is always closed by the union of veins apically.
Posterior crossvein — The vein or veins closing the discal cell apically (m and M3). According to Schiner the basal section of Cu1 of the Comstock-Needham System.
Posterior orbits — The part of the head immediately behind the eyes.
Posthumeral bristle — A bristle situated behind the humerus.
Post ocellar(s) (bristles) — A pair (or more) of bristles arising just below the vertex on the occiput and behind the ocellar tubercle, sometimes termed post-verticals.
Postvertical(s) bristles — See post ocellars.
Praefurca — See prefurca.
Pra — Prealar bristle.
Præscutum — The part of the mesonotum in front of the transverse suture.
Prealar (bristle) — The anterior supra alar bristle.
Prefurca — The petiole of the second and third longitudinal veins. Base of R4+5 (The Radial sector Rs).
Preapical bristle (of tibia) — A dorsal, short bristle situated before the end of the tibia.
Prescutum — See præscutum.
Presutural bristle — A bristle situated in front of the inner end of the notopleuron in front of the suture. The lateral bristle situated in front of but close to the suture.
Proboscis — The mouthparts exclusive of the palpi; adapted for piercing in the Asilidae and laterally flattened in the Laphriini.
Proclinate — Curving or directed forward.
Pronotum — The dorsum of the prothorax.
Propleura — The sides of the prothorax. This is a depressed area; it also includes the area above the front coxse.
Propleural bristle — A bristle situated on the propleura immediately above the front coxae.
Prosternum — The under side of the prothorax, between and in front of the anterior coxae.
Prothoracic bristle — A bristle situated immediately above the anterior coxae (See propleural bristle).
Prothorax — The first segment of the thorax. The first pair of legs arise from the prothorax.
Pruinose — Covered with a hoary dvist. (See pollinose).
Pteropleura — A sclerite lying below the base of the wings.
Pteropleural bristle (s) — Bristle or bristles on the pteropleura.
Pteropleurites — The upper and lower sections of the pteropleura.
Pubescent — Having very short, fine hair.
Pulvilli — Pads borne on the apical segment of the tarsus between the claws.
Punctate — Pitted; covered with small pits.
Radial — Pertaining to the radius.
Radial cell — Any cell bordered in front by a branch of the radius.
Radius — The first to third longitudinal veins. R1 to R5 of Comstock-Needham system.
Raptorial — Fitted for grasping prey. The legs of asilids in general and of Laphriini in particular are prehensile--used to hold and manipulate prey--and they are certainly used to grab prey. However, they exhibit no such extreme modifications towards this end as for example are displayed in mantids, mantispids, and some empidid and ephydrid flies. It is likely that the very efficient asilid system of quieting prey with poison makes such modifications unnecessary.
Reclinate — Curving or directed backward.
Recurrent — The anterior end nearer the base of the wing than some other part.
Rugose — Wrinkled.
Rugulose — Finely wrinkled.
Scape — The basal antennal segment; the second antennal segment is called the pedicel.
Sclerite — Any piece of the body well surrounded by sutures.
Scutellum — A convex sclerite attached to the back of the mesonotum. Sometimes termed the shield.
Scutum — The part of the mesonotum behind the transverse suture.
Second basal cell — A cell lying immediately behind the first basal.
Second vein — The vein lying immediately behind the first vein, its base always united with the base of the third vein (Rs and its anterior branch R2+3).
Serrate — Toothed along the edge like a saw. The hypopharynx of asilids is serrate dorsally (and normally hidden as well).
Sessile — Not capable movement. The antennae of Laphriini are sessile.
Seta — A bristle.
Setigerous tubercles — Tubercles, occurring on the scutellum or legs, each bearing a spine or bristle on its top. characteristic of the hind femora of the genus Lampria.
Setulæ — Very short hairs, sometimes coarse.
Setules — Setulae.
Setulose — Bearing setulae.
Sinuous — S-shaped, winding back and forth.
Sixth longitudinal vein — The first anal vein. The second anal is absent (Anal vein).
Small crossvein — The anterior crossvein (r-m).
Spatulate — Broadened apically, narrow basally.
Spiracles — The external openings of the tracheal system.
Spurs — Either movable spines at the end of the tibiae or strong production of apex of tibiae or a tapering production of some part of the body, usually on the legs.
Squamae — The scales or connecting lobes connecting the wings basally with the thorax. There are two lobes, the upper and lower.
Squamose — Scale-like. Refers particularly to scale-like hairs.
Sternites — Ventral sclerites or the under side of the segments.
Sternopleural bristles — Bristles situated on the upper part of the sternopleura on the posterior half.
Sternum — The under side of the thorax, comprising the pro-, meso- and meta- sternum.
Structural color — Color that depends on diffraction between different structural layers, or some combination of pigment and diffraction, for its effect. Metallic colors are structural colors. Metallic colors are often dull or completely muted in teneral Laphriini.
Subcosta — The vein, usually present, between the costa and the first longitudinal vein.
Subcostal cell — The cell between the subcosta or auxiliary vein and the first vein or radius.
Subcostal crossvein — A crossvein connecting the subcosta or auxiliary vein and the first vein.
Subcostal vein — The vein lying between the costa and the first longitudinal vein.
Sublateral bristles — Bristles situated in a line with the intra-alars but in front of the suture. The anterior two are sometimes included as posthumerals but the term is deceptive.
Submarginal cell(s) — The cell or cells lying between the second and third longitudinal veins (R3 and R4).
Supra-alar bristles — Bristles close to the edge of the thorax behind the suture.
Suture — A line separating the parts of the body wall.
Tarsus (singular) — The feet, composed of five segments. The apical segment bears the claws, pulvilli and empodium. The tarsal segments are numbered from the base, segments one to five. The the first segment is sometimes termed the basitarsus or metatarsus.
Teneral — Used to describe incompletely sclerotized cuticle just after eclosion to the adult. Flies that are killed and pinned while they are teneral often have body parts collapse during the process or after drying, as well as having colors muted. Muting is particularly bad for structural colors.
Tergites — Dorsal sclerites or the upper side of the segment.
Third longitudinal vein — The vein arising jointly with the second vein and branching from it, sometimes branched. Behind it is the first posterior cell and behind or before its base, the first basal cell (R4+5; Posterior branch of Rs; Cubital).
Third or lower basal cell — The cell in the wing bounded anteriorly by the main stem of the cubitus (Cu) basally and second branch of the fifth vein (Cu2) distally, and posteriorly by the second anal vein (A2). In the Laphriini this cell is closed in the wing margin.
Thorax — The middle part of the body bearing the wings and legs.
Tibia(e) — The part of the leg beyond the femur.
Transverse suture (of thorax) — The depressions extending inward from the sides of the mesonotum near the middle, but not true sutures. The suture is obsolete in the middle. It divides the anterior series of bristles from the posterior dorsocentrals and acrosticals.
Trichostical bristles — A term used in the Asilidae for the hypopleural bristles.
Trochanter — The small, ring-like portion connecting the coxae and femora. This appears more or less triangular as only part of it is visible.
Truncate — Ending transversely or with cut-off apex.
Tubercle — A conspicuous, more or less rounded swelling.
Ungues — Claws.
Venation — The arrangement of the veins of the wings.
Venter — The under surface of the abdomen.
Ventrad — Toward the venter.
Ventral — Pertaining to the under side of the body.
Vertex — The uppermost edge of the front; usually that part between the ocelli and the back of the head, or behind and between the upper angles of the eyes.