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Keith Bayless
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taxon links [up-->]Actinomyia [up-->]Allognosta [up-->]Chorisops [up-->]Exaireta [up-->]Beris [up-->]Actina [down<--]Stratiomyidae Interpreting the tree
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The root of the current tree connects the organisms featured in this tree to their containing group and the rest of the Tree of Life. The basal branching point in the tree represents the ancestor of the other groups in the tree. This ancestor diversified over time into several descendent subgroups, which are represented as internal nodes and terminal taxa to the right.

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Tree from Woodley (1995)
Containing group: Stratiomyidae


Beridines are often colorful metallic flies. Adults feed at flowers. Males of numerous species form mating swarms.  The few known larvae live in moss, leaf litter, and upper layers of soil (Rozkošný 1998).


Adult members of the Beridinae are distinguished by the impressed tergal grooves on abdominal segments two to six, and larvae by the major setae with tufts of auxiliary setae. There are seven visible abdominal segments in Beridinae. This is a putatively plesiomorphic state as it is shared only with Parhadrestiinae and Chiromyzinae in the Stratiomyidae (Woodley 1995).

Relationship of Beridinae to Other Stratiomyidae

Beridinae is the putative sister group of other Stratiomyidae excluding Parhadrestiinae and Chiromyzinae. Abdominal segments five to eight are reduced in size in all soldier flies more derived than Beridinae (Woodley 2001).

Discussion of Phylogenetic Relationships

Woodley (1995) hypothesized the relationships of the 33 genera of Beridinae based on 22 adult morphological characters, using a parsimony analysis with successive weighting. As a result of this analysis, Woodley (1995) informally divided Beridinae into the Beris group of genera and the Actina group.


Rozkošný, R. 1998. Chapter 24. Family Stratiomyidae. Manual Palaearct. Dipt. 2: 387-411.

Woodley, N. E. 1995. The genera of Beridinae (Diptera: Stratiomyidae). Memoirs of Entomol. Soc. Wash. 16 1-231.

Woodley, N. E. 2001. A World Catalog of the Stratiomyidae (Insecta: Diptera). Myia 11: 1-473. Backhuys Publishers, Leiden.

Information on the Internet

Title Illustrations
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Scientific Name Actina viridis
Location Raleigh, North Carolina, USA
Specimen Condition Dead Specimen
Life Cycle Stage Adult
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Image Use creative commons This media file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License - Version 2.5.
Copyright © Keith Bayless
About This Page

Keith Bayless
North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina, USA

Correspondence regarding this page should be directed to Keith Bayless at

All Rights Reserved.

Citing this page:

Bayless, Keith. 2008. Beridinae. Version 28 September 2008 (under construction). http://tolweb.org/Beridinae/23956/2008.09.28 in The Tree of Life Web Project, http://tolweb.org/

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Each ToL branch page provides a synopsis of the characteristics of a group of organisms representing a branch of the Tree of Life. The major distinction between a branch and a leaf of the Tree of Life is that each branch can be further subdivided into descendent branches, that is, subgroups representing distinct genetic lineages.

For a more detailed explanation of the different ToL page types, have a look at the Structure of the Tree of Life page.

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