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Flies and. Their Habits.

The horse-fly is the most cruel and blood-thirsty of the entire family. He is armed with a most formidable weapon, which consists of four lancets, so sharp and strong that they will penetrate leather. When not in use they are nicely j folded away in a sucker. He makes his | appearance in summer, and may often be seen in the vicinity of small streams of water. He is said to subsist in part upon an airy diet, and to pass his life harmlessly. Not so the female, for she is armed with six lancets, with which she bleeds both cattle and horses, and evert human beings. She lays her eggs in moist places, and after they are hatched into footless maggots, they make all necessary journeys by stretching and closing the segments of their bodies, their heads being supplied by two hooks by which they get their food. In process of time this maggot goes down into moist earth, where it reposes for some weeks, after which it bursts the pupa case, and comes forth a large black fly, armed and equipped like its predecessors. The sewer and cess-pool fly resemble each bther in their habits, with a single exception—the former lives in cleaner water and has a less complicated apparatus. The female lays her eggs where theymay be readied by the filthyfluid. The youn? are soon hatched, and may be seen floating on the water and taking in all its bad qualities. They die if placed in clean water. They dart swiftly about and go down for the space of a minute, but are obliged to rise to breathe, In the course of time they seek a dry place, and after their wings have grown, emerge .regular flies like their parents, ready to repeat their filthy, but useful work. We can form only, a vague idea how greatly we are indebted to those loathsome insects as scavengers. >■?.•■

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Bibliographic details

Flies and. Their Habits., Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2471, 22 July 1890

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Flies and. Their Habits. Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2471, 22 July 1890