The Diptera ("di-ptera" = two-winged) or "true flies" is the largest order of animals in the UK with around 7,000 known species and new ones being discovered every year. They are found in all habitats from the sea shore to mountain tops. Whilst some are agricultural pests or vectors of disease, the great majority are beneficial. They are extremely important as predators on other pests and diseases, as pollinators, as food for other animals and the immature stages of the bulk of the species are involved in the decay of organic matter and the recycling of material back into the soil.
Entomologists who specialise in these insects are "dipterists". In 1993, a group of people who wanted to find out more about every aspect of their lives, including the habitats they require, set up the Dipterists Forum. There is a great deal still to learn about flies. Mapping the distribution of some groups is a major achievement of the Dipterists Forum to date, but the immature stages of the majority of species are still unknown. Many species are becoming increasingly rare as a result of habitat loss and climate change.
Why not join the Dipterists Forum and help us find out more about flies? There is so much still to learn; we welcome beginners and there are always people who can help you out in the early stages. You donít need to be an expert, or even to leave your own garden, to contribute to our knowledge of these fascinating insects. Flies need your help! Read more ...
Watch our new video for more about the Dipterist's Forum
Annual meeting and AGM 26-27 November
This year's annual meeting will be held at the Natural History Museum, London, with a day of talks on Saturday 26 November and access to the Diptera collection on Sunday 27 November. This event is free and open to non-members, all you need to do is turn up!
Please access the museum via the staff entrance on Exhibition Road and sign in as a visitor at the reception desk. From there you will be directed to the Neil Chalmers Suite (Saturday) or Angela Marmont Centre (Sunday).
There will be a prize for the best Diptera exhibit, so if you have something to display please bring it along on Saturday. Pemberley Books will also be in attendance.
If you would like to join us for the Dipterists Supper on Saturday evening please contact Duncan Sivell (email@example.com) in advance of the meeting or early on Saturday morning. We will be dining in a local Italian restaurant.
The programme for the meeting is as follows:
Neil Chalmers Suite
Saturday 26 November
10:00 Venue opens (set out exhibits)
10:30 Introduction and welcome to the NHM
10:40 The new social world of collections Ė the impact of social media
11:00 Developing studies in the Anisopodidae: some tropical data
11:20 Tea & coffee
11:40 The study of blow fly intra-puparial development for post-mortem interval estimations
12:00 Annual General Meeting
14:00 Judging of exhibits prize giving
14:10 The Slime Flux pub, its drinkers, loafers and pullers
14:40 Tales from the riverbank- revisiting the Diptera of exposed riverine sediments
15:10 Tea & coffee
15:30 Dipterology into policy: bluetongue virus and Culicoides biting midges
16:00 Further discussion and mingling
16:30 Close of session - take exhibits down
17:00 Vacate the venue - move to Queen's Arms
19:00 Dipterists Supper in Rocco restaurant
Angela Marmont Centre
Sunday 27 November
10:00 Venue opens
10:30 Arrange access to the Diptera collection
11:00 Workshop: drying and setting wet Diptera specimens
16:30 Close of session - begin tidying up
Downloads of Dipterists Forum Bulletins
A reminder that all but the last 3 can be downloaded, links are at http://www.dipteristsforum.org.uk/t4317 … letin.html
BRISC - Recorder News 2016
Frequently there's an item on Diptera in BRISC's excellent newsletter.
The latest has a report by Lee Johnson of an "Introduction to Fly Families" course at Preston Montford.
Get it at http://brisc.org.uk/newsletters/Pending … ooklet.pdf
or http://brisc.org.uk/newsletters/Pending … Screen.pdf
The Bulletin of the Dipterists Forum
Bursaries for 2017
The Dipterists Forum holds an annual weekend course at the Preston Montford field studies centre. These courses cover selected families of flies in detail, and the 2017 course will be on the Drosophilidae (fruit flies) and Sciomyzidae (snail-killing flies). It is likely to take place in February. The Forum also has annual residential Summer field meetings lasting for one week. These take place at various venues around the country, and the 2017 meeting is expected to be in Snowdonia during June.
We offer up to two bursaries for the Preston Montford course, and up to three for the field meeting. Each bursary covers half the total cost of the course or the meeting, including accommodation costs. If you would like to apply for a bursary please send your application by e-mail to the chairman, Howard Bentley, firstname.lastname@example.org
Your application should say what you hope to gain from attending, how you would expect to contribute to the Forumís aims of the study, recording and conservation of Diptera, and why you would benefit from financial assistance. If you are currently involved in a research programme please include brief details. We will be looking for evidence of enthusiasm and interest in flies. Preference may be given to those who have not received a bursary previously. Applications should not exceed 300 words.
Applicants must be members of the Dipterists Forum. The closing dates for applications are: 31st October 2016 for Preston Montford; 28th February 2017 for the field meeting. If you would like further details of what is involved in these meetings please send a request to the e-mail address above.