A fly from the Family Pelechorhynchidae – nectar and pollen feeders

A fly from the Family Pelechorhynchidae – nectar and pollen feeders

Aussie fly identification CD wins award

Reference: 07/183

Summer is approaching and with it will come our ubiquitous flies. But there is a lot more to flies than those that provoke our great Aussie salute.

  • 17 September 2007

The CD – On the Fly: The Interactive Atlas and Key to Australian Fly Families – which provides a simple way to identify fly families and learn about their biology, has been awarded a Whitley Award commendation.

”I am so pleased that the team has received recognition for the great work they did,“ says project coordinator and CSIRO Entomology fly expert, Dr David Yeates . ”The CD was a truly collaborative effort between CSIRO, the Australian Museum, University of Queensland, University of California (Davis) USA and University of Guelph, Canada.”

Dr Yeates says that On the Fly contains many features that make it an invaluable tool for amateur and professional entomologists, biology students and teachers, conservation and land managers and environmental consultants. ”In fact it should be of interest to anyone interested in the natural world.” he says,

With an easy to use interface, the CD includes:

  • an atlas of fly anatomy with zoom facility
  • information on the importance of flies and how to collect them
  • keys to all families of Australian flies and information on their biology
  • more than 500 photographs and drawings.
    “The biology and behaviour of flies are extremely diverse. Some recycle nutrients. Others are predators or parasites or pollinators. Some are important pests, some are vectors of disease and yet others are used in biological control. All in all they are an essential part of our ecosystems.”

On the Fly is published jointly by the Australian Government’s Australian Biological Resources Study (ABRS) and the University of Queensland’s Centre for Biological Information Technology (CBIT).

”Australia abounds in Diptera – the true flies,” Dr Yeates says. “Yet only about 20 per cent of an estimated 30,000 species have been described.

”The biology and behaviour of flies are extremely diverse. Some recycle nutrients. Others are predators or parasites or pollinators. Some are important pests, some are vectors of disease and yet others are used in biological control. All in all they are an essential part of our ecosystems.”

The Whitley Awards are presented annually by the Royal Zoological Society of New South Wales for outstanding publications on Australian fauna.

The CD On the Fly: The Interactive Atlas and Key to Australian Fly Families is available from CBIT at:
http://www.cbit.uq.edu.au/software/onthefly/  [external link]

Download images at: Aussie fly identification CD wins award.

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