One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A bloodsucking horsefly that attacks humans and other large mammals. It can transmit various diseases, including tularemia.
Genus Chrysops, family Tabanidae: several species, including C. callidus, widespread throughout North America
- ‘Having the rabbit as my companion, albeit for only a short while, was a welcome distraction from the black deer flies attracted by my sweat.’
- ‘Biting flies common in the U.S. include the species Chrysops discalis (deer fly), Chrysops aestuans, Chrysops relictus, and Chrysozona pluvialis.’
2A bloodsucking louse fly that is a parasite of deer. It loses its wings on finding a host, and the female gives birth to fully grown larvae.
Lipoptena cervi, family Hippoboscidae
- ‘The mosquitoes and horse and deer flies were out in force and bent on extracting blood and flesh.’
- ‘Minutes after I began my walk, deer flies buzzed around my ears and two mosquitoes lodged in my left eye.’
- ‘For years I had a terrible problem with face flies, deer flies and ticks.’
- ‘Swatting at mosquitoes and deer flies, the five picked their way through the Florida scrub, trying to avoid the briars and sawgrass sharp as a sword blade.’
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