Canacidae, incorrectly Canaceidae, or beach flies, surf or surge flies, is a family of Diptera. There are 113 species in 12 genera.[3][4][5][6] The family now includes Tethininae as a subfamily.

face on view of the head of Canace ranula, Loew
Canacidae wing veins-1
Wing venation
Tethina lusitanica
Tethina lusitanica Munari, 2009
Scientific classification

Jones, 1906
  • Canaceidae Hendel, 1916

Family description

For terms see Morphology of Diptera.

Minute (1.6–5 mm) yellow, grey or grey-brown pruinose flies with whitish to greyish markings. The head is large with small antenna bearing bare to pubescent arista. The "mouth" is a large oval opening. There are three or four pairs of orbital bristles on the head directed outward (inset upswept). Postvertical bristles are absent but diverging pseudopostocellar bristles are present. Other head bristles present are ocellar bristles, 2-5 pairs of frontal bristles, curving outward, interfrontal bristles and vibrissae ("whiskers"). The genae are high with 1 or more upcurving bristles. Tibiae are without a dorsal preapical bristle.

The wing is unmarked in almost all species. The costa has a subcostal break; the subcosta is parallel to vein R1 and merging with that vein just before the costa. Tibiae without dorsal preapical bristle.

See [1] Drawings of Canace.



Canacidae are mostly intertidal flies. They are found along sea coasts, on the surface of small water bodies, saline and fresh, at places protected from wind. They feed on Infusoria and other minute organisms.


  1. ^ a b c Jones, B.J. (1906). "Catalogue of the Ephydridae, with bibliography and description of new species". University of California Publications in Entomology. University of California, Los Angeles. 1 (2): 153–198.
  2. ^ a b Hendel, Friedrich (1916). "Beiträge zur Systematik der Acalyptraten Musciden (Dipt.)". Entomologische Mitteilungen. 5 (9–12): 294–299.
  3. ^ Mathis, Wayne N. (1992). "World Catalog of the Beach-Fly Family Canacidae (Diptera)". Smithson. Contributions Zool. (Print). Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press. 536 (536): 1–18. doi:10.5479/si.00810282.536.
  4. ^ Munari, Lorenzo; Mathis, Wayne N. (2010). "World Catalog of the Family Canacidae (including Tethinidae) (Diptera), with keys to the supraspecific taxa" (PDF). Zootaxa. Auckland, New Zealand: Magnolia Press. 2471: 1–84. doi:10.11646/zootaxa.2471.1.1. ISSN 1175-5334. Retrieved 25 January 2012.
  5. ^ Mathis, Wayne N (1998). Papp, L.; Darvas, B (eds.). Family Canacidae. Contributions to a Manual of palaearctic Diptera. 3. Budapest: Science Herald. pp. 251–257.
  6. ^ Mathis, Wayne N; Freidberg, A. (1991). "Review of Afrotropical beach flies of the tribe Canacini and subfamily Nocticanacinae (Diptera: Canacidae)". Proceedings of the Entomological Society of Washington. Washington DC, USA: Entomological Society of Washington. 93: 70–85. ISSN 0013-8797.
  7. ^ a b c Haliday, A.H. (1837). "New British Insects Indicated in Mr. Curtis's Guide". Annals and Magazine of Natural History. 2: 183–190. doi:10.1080/00222933809512369.
  8. ^ a b Mathis, W.N. (1982). "Studies of Canacidae (Diptera), I: Suprageneric revision of the family, with revisions of new tribe Dynomiellini and new genus Isocanace". Smithsonian Contributions to Zoology. Smithsonian. 347: iii+1–29.
  9. ^ Cresson, E.T., Jr. (1924). "Descriptions of New Genera and Species of the Dipterous Family Ephydridae, Paper VI". Entomological News. 35 (5): 159–164.
  10. ^ a b Hendel, Friedrich (1914). "Acalyptrate Musciden (Dipt.) III. In , H. Sauter's Formosa-Ausbeute". Supplementa Entomologica. 3: 90–117.
  11. ^ Giordani Soika, A. (1956). "Diagnosi preliminari di nuovi Ephydridae e Canaceidae della Regione etiopica e del Madagascar (Diptera)". Bollettino del Museo Civico di Storia Naturale di Venezia. 9: 123–130.
  12. ^ Wirth, W.W. (1951). "A revision of the dipterous family Canaceidae". Occasional Papers of Bernice P. Bishop Museum. Bishop Museum. 20 (14): 245–275.
  13. ^ Mathis, W.N.; Munari, L. (1996). "World Catalog of the Family Tethinidae (Diptera)". Smithsonian Contributions to Zoology. Smithsonian. 584 (584): iv+1–27. doi:10.5479/si.00810282.584.
  14. ^ Eaton, A.E. (1875). "Breves Dipterarum uniusque Lepidopterarum insulae Kerguelensi indigenarum diagnoses". The Entomologist's Monthly Magazine. 12: 58–61.
  15. ^ a b Mathis, W.N. (1982). "Description of a new species of Nocticanace Malloch (Diptera: Canacidae) from Sri Lanka with notes on two related species". Proceedings of the Entomological Society of Washington. The Entomological Society of Washington. 84 (3): 421–425.
  16. ^ Munari, Lorenzo (1986). "Contributo alla conoscenza dei Tethinidae afrotropicali. II. Considerazioni tassonomiche sulla sottofamiglia Horaismopterinae Sabr. e descrizione di un genere e due specie nuove (Diptera, Tethinidae)". Società Veneziana di Scienze Naturali - Lavori. 11: 41–52.
  17. ^ Hendel, Friedrich (1934). "Revision der Tethiniden (Dipt. Muscid. acal.)". Tijdschrift voor Entomologie. Amsterdam: Nederlandse Entomologische Vereniging. 77: 37–54.
  18. ^ Munari, Lorenzo (2000). "Beach Flies from South-Western coast of Australia, with Descriptions of a New Genus and Two New Species (Diptera Tethinidae)". Bollettino della Società Entomologica Italiana. 132 (3): 237–248.
  19. ^ Malloch, John Russel (1914). "Formosan Agromyzidae" (PDF). Annales Musei Nationalis Hungarici. 12: 306–336. Retrieved 24 August 2014.
  20. ^ a b Munari, Lorenzo (2004). "Beach Flies (Diptera: Tethinidae: Tethininae) from Australia and Papua New Guinea, with descriptions of two new genera and ten new species" (PDF). Records of the Australian Museum. Australian Museum, Sydney. 56 (1): 29–56. doi:10.3853/j.0067-1975.56.2004.1395. ISSN 0067-1975. Retrieved 24 August 2014.
  21. ^ Freidberg, A. (1995). "A study of Zaleinae, a taxon transitional between Canacidae and Tethinidae (Diptera), with the description of a new genus and species". Entomologica Scandinavica. 26 (4): 447–457. doi:10.1163/187631295x00107.

External links


The Acalyptratae or Acalyptrata are a subsection of the Schizophora, which are a section of the order Diptera, the "true flies". In various contexts the Acalyptratae also are referred to informally as the acalyptrate muscoids, or acalyptrates, as opposed to the Calyptratae. All forms of the name refer to the lack of calypters in the members of this subsection of flies. An alternative name, Acalypterae is current, though in minority usage. It was first used by Justin Pierre Marie Macquart in 1835 for a section of his tribe Muscides; he used it to refer to all acalyptrates plus scathophagids and phorids, but excluding Conopidae.

The confusing forms of the names stem from their first usage; Acalyptratae and Acalyptrata actually are adjectival forms in New Latin. They were coined in the mid 19th century in contexts such as "Muscae Calyptratae and Acalyptratae" and "Diptera Acalyptrata", and the forms stuck.The Acalyptratae are a large assemblage, exhibiting very diverse habits, with one notable and perhaps surprising exception: no known acalyptrates are obligate blood-feeders (hematophagous), though blood feeding at various stages of the life history is common throughout other Dipteran sections.


Afrotethina is a genus of beach flies in the family Canacidae (formally Tethinidae). All known species are Afrotropical in distribution .

Canace (fly)

Canace is a genus of beach flies in the family Canacidae. All known species are of Afrotropical or Palaearctic distribution .


Canacea is a genus of beach flies in the family Canacidae. All known species are Nearctic or Neotropical.


Canacinae is a subfamily of beach flies in the family of Canacidae.


Carnoidea are a superfamily of Acalyptratae flies.


Dasyrhicnoessa is a genus of beach flies in the family Canacidae (formally Tethinidae). All known species are Afrotropical, Neotropical, Indomalayan, or Australasian-Oceanian in distribution .


Dynomiellini, is a tribe of beach flies in the family of Canacidae.


Horaismopterinae, is a subfamily of beach flies in the family of Canacidae. There are 4 species in 2 genera, all inhabiting oceanic seashores.


Nocticanacinae is a subfamily of beach flies in the family of Canacidae.


Suffomyia is a genus of beach flies in the family Canacidae. All known species are Australasian or African.


Tethina is a genus of beach flies in the family Canacidae (formally Tethinidae). They are found in all terrestrial Ecozones.


Tethininae, formally the family Tethinidae is a paraphyletic group of tiny drab-coloured or grey Acalyptratae flies. There are over 115 species in 7 genera known from all zoogeographic regions. They are inconspicuous flies which are still poorly known in some remote, huge, tropical areas (e.g. South America).


Tethinosoma is a genus of beach flies in the family Canacidae. The only known species, T. fulvifrons, is Australasian.


Thitena is a genus of beach flies, insects in the family Canacidae (formally Tethinidae). All known species are Australasian in distribution.


Xanthocanace is a genus of beach flies in the family Canacidae. All known species are Oriental, Palearctic or Afrotropical.

Xanthocanace ranula

Xanthocanace ranula, is a European species of Canacidae.


Zalea is a genus of beach flies in the family Canacidae. All known species are Australasian.


Zaleinae, is a subfamily of beach flies in the family of Canacidae. There are 16 species in 2 genera.

Extant Diptera families


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