Can you tell me what this is? I noticed a lot of them flying around this weekend (May 7-8) where I live in Newport News, Virginia and tried looking them up on the net, but the closest I could find was a Pyrgotid Fly, mostly because of the wing shape and coloring. It is about 1/4 to 3/8 inch long. A local entomologist said it could be a seed maggot fly.
We contacted Eric Eaton for assistance with your photo. He writes: “The fly may be an Otitidae (aka Ulidiidae) species rather than a Tephritidae. I am just learning about the flies, though:-) Try the Systematic Entomology Laboratory at the Smithsonian, going to the Diptera pages. Also try Bugguide, as I have seen this critter there, again, in Otitidae.” We did some additional internet checking, and while we couldn’t locate your exact species we did find that this family is known as the Picture-Winged Flies as well as this information: “Larvae of most Picture-winged Flies feed on decaying vegetation while a few are root feeders.” There is also some confusion between the Platystomatid and Otitidid Flies as both are commonly called Picture-Winged Flies. Your fly is definitely not a Pergotid.
NOTE: Delphinia picta
(05/11/2005) Hi, I saw the photo submitted on 05/09/2005 by Harry of the picture-winged fly. I’ve photographed several of these in Atlanta. They were identified as Delphinia picta.
Thanks for the assistance Bill.