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Superregnum: Eukaryota
Regnum: Animalia
Subregnum: Eumetazoa
Cladus: Bilateria
Cladus: Nephrozoa
Cladus: Protostomia
Cladus: Ecdysozoa
Cladus: Panarthropoda
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Hexapoda
Classis: Insecta
Cladus: Dicondylia
Subclassis: Pterygota
Cladus: Metapterygota
Infraclassis: Neoptera
Cladus: Eumetabola
Cladus: Endopterygota
Superordo: Panorpida
Cladus: Antliophora
Ordo: Diptera
Subordo: Brachycera
Infraordo: Asilomorpha
Superfamilia: Nemestrinoidea

Familia: Acroceridae
Subfamilia: Panopinae
Genus: Eulonchus
Species (6): E. halli – E. marginatus – E. marialiciae – E. sapphirinus – E. smaragdinus – E. tristis

Eulonchus Gerstaecker, 1856: 359

Type species: Eulonchus smaragdinus Gerstaecker, 1856, by monotypy.
Primary references

Gerstäcker, C.E.A. 1856. Beiträge zur Kenntniss der Henopier. Stettiner Entomologische Zeitung 17: 339–361. BHL

Additional references

Borkent, C.J., Gillung, J.P. & Winterton, S.L. 2016. Jewelled spider flies of North America: a revision and phylogeny of Eulonchus Gerstaecker (Diptera, Acroceridae). ZooKeys 619: 103–146. DOI: 10.3897/zookeys.619.8249 Open access. Reference page.
Schlinger, E.I. 1960. A review of the genus Eulonchus Gerstaecker. Part I. The species of the smaragdinus group (Diptera: Acroceridae). Annals of the Entomological Society of America 53(3): 416–422. DOI: 10.1093/aesa/53.3.416 abstract only seen

Vernacular names
English: North American jewelled spider flies

Eulonchus is a genus of small-headed flies in the family Acroceridae. There are six described species in Eulonchus.[1][2][3][4] The genus is found in North America. Adults have a metallic blue, green or sometimes purple coloration, giving them a jewel-like appearance. A common name for flies in the genus is the North American jewelled spider flies.[5] Adults are also known as "sapphires" or "emeralds".[6]


These six species belong to the genus Eulonchus:[5]

Eulonchus halli Schlinger, 1960 i c g b[7] (Hall's sapphire)
Eulonchus marginatus Osten Sacken, 1877 i c g b[8] (Sombre Sapphire or Emerald)
Eulonchus marialiciae Brimley, 1925 i c g[9] (Mary-Alice’s Emerald, Mary Alice's small-headed fly)
Eulonchus sapphirinus Osten Sacken, 1877 i c g b[8] (Northern Sapphire or Emerald)
Eulonchus smaragdinus Gerstaecker, 1856 c g b (Synonym: E. smaragdinus pilosus Schlinger, 1960 i c g[7]) (Southern Emerald or Sapphire)
Eulonchus tristis Loew, 1872 i c g b (Dusky Sapphire)

Data sources: i = ITIS,[1] c = Catalogue of Life,[2] g = GBIF,[3] b =[4]

Most species of Eulonchus are distributed west of the Rocky Mountains in the United States, northwards to Canada and southwards to Baja California, Mexico. The exception is Eulonchus marialiciae, which is known only from a small area in the Great Smoky Mountains in North Carolina, though future studies are needed to confirm the species' true range.[5]

Flies in the genus attack spiders in the families Euctenizidae and Antrodiaetidae.[5]


"Eulonchus Report". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved 2018-04-23.
"Browse Eulonchus". Catalogue of Life. Retrieved 2018-04-23.
"Eulonchus". GBIF. Retrieved 2018-04-23.
"Eulonchus Genus: Information". Retrieved 2018-04-23.
Borkent, C.J.; Gillung, J.P.; Winterton, S.L. (2016). "Jewelled spider flies of North America: a revision and phylogeny of Eulonchus Gerstaecker (Diptera, Acroceridae)". ZooKeys. 619. doi:10.3897/zookeys.619.8249. PMC 5090163. PMID 27829790.
"Flying jewels spell death for tarantulas: Study of a North American spider fly genus". ScienceDaily. Pensoft Publishers. 5 October 2016.
Schlinger, E. I. (1960). "A Review of the Genus: Eulonchus Gerstaecker. Part I. The Species of the Smaragdinus Group (Diptera: Acroceridae)". Annals of the Entomological Society of America. 53 (3): 416–422. doi:10.1093/aesa/53.3.416.
Osten Sacken, C.R. (1877). "Western Diptera: Descriptions of new genera and species of Diptera from the region west of the Mississippi and especially from California". Bulletin of the United States Geological and Geographical Survey of the Territories. 3: 189–354. doi:10.5962/bhl.title.57939.

Brimley, C.S. (1925). "New species of Diptera from North Carolina". Entomological News. 36: 73–77.

Further reading

McAlpine, J. F.; Petersen, B. V.; Shewell, G. E.; Teskey, H. J.; Vockeroth, J. R.; Wood, D. M., eds. (1981). Manual of Nearctic Diptera, Volume I. Agriculture Canada, Research Branch. ISBN 978-0-660-10731-8.

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