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People and Biological Diversity

Flies are a large group of Iowa's insects, and there are a huge number of Iowa's flies which are essentially unknown. I don't know of a list of Iowa's flies, but I would guess there to be between 2,500 to 3,500 species of flies in Iowa.

Flies have a tremendous variety of habits and life cycles, some of which are well known and some of which are highly specialized and oftentimes unknown.

Flies also range the spectrum from pest and nuisance species to species that are beneficial to man because they pollinate plants, species that are beneficial to man because they prey on pest species and species that are beneficial to man because they promote decomposition of dead animals and animal waste. There are many that do not fit any of those categories, either.

I admit that I find many species of flies to be entertaining. Some are very beautiful as well. But then there are some that need to be swatted.  Mostly, though, I think their beauty and diversity is underappreciated.

Here is a gallery of some of Iowa's flies, in no particular order.  Click on the pictures and the photos on the top of the page to learn more.

Iowa probably has between 3,000 and 4,000 species of flies, and some of the flies found here do not have a scientific name yet.  So this gallery represents only a small handful of what is here.  This is not intended as a scientific resource, but more as just a glimpse of some of the wonderful creatures that can be found here.