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I'll never understand crane flies

  1. Aug 5, 2012 #1
    How on earth have these things not died out yet?
    There has been one flapping about my room all day, hitting into every wall/piece of furnature it can. It managed to lose a leg so it's going about with 5 which must have off balanced it or something because it can only seem to fly in helices. It's flapped its way into my face numerous times and now it has managed to get itself stuck on the top of my wall, I have no idea how.. It's dangling by one leg and it has another two stuck between its body and the wall and it can't seem to free them.
    I don't even understand how they can eat or what they eat.. I can't see them managing to hunt anything and ive never seen them land on a plate I may happen to have lying around with some leftovers.
    I'm pretty mad, I've had an onslaught of at least one sneaking it's way into every room in my house every day for the past two weeks.

    Crane flies;
    How haven't they died out?
    What do they eat?
    How do they eat?
    How do you get rid of them/keep them out?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 5, 2012 #2
    I'm sorry to have to tell you you're probably hallucinating. Cranes only have two legs.
     
  4. Aug 5, 2012 #3

    Danger

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    :rofl:

    Gen, are you referring to dragonfiles because they resemble Sikorsky Skycranes, or is it some other critter?
     
  5. Aug 5, 2012 #4
    >.>

    nono, these damn things, sometimes called daddy long legs'
    I'm pretty sure they're not a UK only insect (could be wrong though).
    crane_fly.jpg
     
  6. Aug 5, 2012 #5

    Danger

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    Okay...
    I've never seen anything like that. Here, "daddy longlegs" refers to an arachnid that is superficially similar to a spider. They eat aphids, gnats, etc. and are entirely harmless (and don't have wings).
     
  7. Aug 5, 2012 #6
    Well dang, maybe they aren't that common in other places.
     
  8. Aug 6, 2012 #7

    Monique

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    I have the same thing here, but we call them window washers or long-leg mosquitos (or hay-wagons, but that name is used for the long-legged spider as well). One was bumping into the window for at least 15 minutes, trying to get in. Now I have another one bumping into the window, trying to get out.

    Apparently they don't eat (or at least not much). They're drawn to windows, surely you can use that to your advantage when trying to get them out.
     
  9. Aug 6, 2012 #8

    Danger

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    They have to eat something, but it might just be a matter of sucking up nectar.
    Does anyone know the proper taxonomic definition of these things so that we can research them? (The reason that I've never seen one is probably determined by climate; maybe they don't like to have their wings frozen off.)
     
  10. Aug 6, 2012 #9

    Monique

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    No really, it's said that adults don't eat. It would explain their erratic behavior :biggrin:
    Tipula paludosa and Tipula oleracea (Diptera:Tipulidae).
     
  11. Aug 6, 2012 #10

    Danger

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    Thanks, Monique. I see by the references that they're Newfies. That's why they aren't allowed in my province. :approve:
     
  12. Aug 6, 2012 #11
    What he is referring to is a type of crane fly. There are over 4k known types of crane flies, so I'm sure they come in many different forms (possibly with different amounts of legs).

    I know in Florida (or at least parts of Florida) they are known as gallinippers. In Kentucky they are sometimes referred to as mosquito hawks, mosquito eaters, or skeeter eaters. I also have heared them referred to as daddy longlegs or female daddy longlegs.

    In fact he question of what they eat is probably the most interesting thing about them, many of them do not eat as adults (I don't think they live very long). When they do it is often nectar. As larvae they will eat plants and roots.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crane_fly
     
  13. Aug 6, 2012 #12

    lisab

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    :rofl:

    I regard Crane Flies as the bums of the insect world...kind of disheveled and can't walk (fly) straight. They creep me out, too.
     
  14. Aug 7, 2012 #13
    I'm familiar with these bugs. They somehow break into your house in large numbers, then spend considerable energy demonstrating how stupid and helpless they are.
     
  15. Aug 7, 2012 #14
    Same reason flies don't die out, they lay millions of eggs, and not the booted feet of humans, nor the spiders and other predators can kill them all.

    Big "flies" are not that hard to keep out, keep your house closed down, don't open windows, or let them in. I have a fruit fly infestation atm, they are impossible to keep out because the buggers are small fast breeders and everywhere!
     
  16. Aug 8, 2012 #15

    Monique

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    Hermetically closing all windows sounds like a severe measure for keeping flies outdoors.. Fruit flies are easy to catch, I recently had a swarm of about 50 that came out of a pineapple. I peeled the pineapple, threw the peels into a plastic bag, waited a few hours for all the flies to settle on the peelings and then just closed the bag and threw them all out :biggrin:
     
  17. Aug 8, 2012 #16
    Exactly this :rofl:

    I thought I managed to get them all out but last night I hear a 'bvvzzt' coming from behind me and the next thing I know I've got one flailing about in my face. I've not had any of the windows open (or doors for any length of time) in the past week so I must have still had some residual cranefly left over :L
     
  18. Aug 8, 2012 #17
    yeah you'd think, I keep all my fruit in the fridge now, but the buggers feed on any food scraps not just fruit, try keeping your entire kitchen free of food stains permanently. It's not easy. I have bug spray I kill thousands but with the humidity and heat, the eggs are probably everywhere and anywhere. Meh they are harmless, and their numbers are reduced by keeping all food out of open areas, so it's not so bad. It's more about management in the hot months at the moment rather than eradication.
     
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