Louse Fly

Subject: Fly, beetle or spider hybrid
Location: baldwin park, ca
September 15, 2013 4:17 am
I have found three of these guys in my house. One just flew away with his life never to be heard from again, one my daughter accidently squashed and then this guy seemed to take a liking to my room, bunked who knows where & occasionally made either a strutting appearance on my wall or did a fly by. I didn’t see him again for a few days (definitely male, sheesh!) only to have the misfortune of walking on the nape of my neck whilst laying in my bed engrossed in a book & I slapped the back of my neck, jumped up and found him clinging to the back of my pj’s via one leg, taking a few last breaths. Anywho, I am curious to know what type of fly/beetle/spider this is as I have never seen this before I moved here. He was the size of a house fly but the body is flat and and diamond shaped and appeared to have a hard shelled body opposed to a fly.
Signature: mr serojo

Louse Fly
Louse Fly

Dear mr serojo,
This is a Louse Fly in the family Hippoboscidae.  Louse Flies feed on the blood of mammals or birds, and some species are very particular about the host animal.  Hosts include pigeons, deer and sheep.  If you live near an agricultural community, it might explain the number of recent sightings.  Some species of Louse Flies attach to a host animal and then lose their wings, continuing to feed and no longer needing any mobility.  Without a preferred host, the individual you swatted on your neck might have been preparing to take a bite out of you.  Louse Flies are also called Keds.

Thank you kindly for the reply. I so seldom receive an answer from sites.  We just moved to a condo and a whole family of pigeons live in the central a/c unit that’s atop our roof. We have been pestering our landlord to properly cover the unit as they bunker inside, come out mornings and leave their gifts on our windows and patio. I have to admit I was more comfortable with my hybrid super bug; hearing the word louse is never pleasant, especially knowing you may have been the subpar – you will have to do” meal.
Again, thanks for the reply!

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