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Old 20-08-15, 11:04 AM
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Default Horsefly

This horsefly was in my back garden earlier this week - never seen such a large one, about 3cm in length.
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Old 20-08-15, 10:05 PM
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Eeurgh! Very brave of you to get that close. Last time I was bitten by one it hurt! Then it itched for what seemed like months.

Nasty things!!

Tony

PS - they used to be known as cleggs or cleggies IIRC. Anyone else have this recollection?
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Old 21-08-15, 07:00 AM
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I don't think I've ever seen one. This is despite working next to an equestrian centre.
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Old 21-08-15, 04:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony F View Post
Eeurgh! Very brave of you to get that close. Last time I was bitten by one it hurt! Then it itched for what seemed like months.

Nasty things!!

Tony

PS - they used to be known as cleggs or cleggies IIRC. Anyone else have this recollection?
Never heard of them being called that.

I'm not sure it was in good health, it was crawling slowly through the grass. I never saw it in flight at all. Looking at pic 3 it may be playing host to some mites.
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Old 21-08-15, 07:36 PM
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That is one evil looking Horsefly Ian! I must say though that they are great images! You were brave to tackle such close images!
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Old 21-08-15, 09:52 PM
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That is one evil looking Horsefly Ian! I must say though that they are great images! You were brave to tackle such close images!
Thanks Judith. I was wary - wanted to move some of the blades of grass out of the way but thought better of it.
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Old 23-08-15, 07:07 AM
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Quote:
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PS - they used to be known as cleggs or cleggies IIRC. Anyone else have this recollection?
The name 'Clegg' is used for all species in the genus Haematopoda, which have mottled wings.

The one in these photos is a Tabanus species, probably Tabanus sudeticus (Dark Giant Horsefly) - so this one isn't a clegg.
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Old 23-08-15, 08:52 PM
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Who Knew??

I thought "clegg" was just a kids' term for any old horsefly. Certainly in the days when I used the term it was a generic name for all big bitey things that we should stay away from. Makes me wonder how on earth a term with a scientific basis gets to be "street slang".

Thanks for your input - as always - Roy.

Tony
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Old 26-08-15, 01:58 PM
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Makes me wonder how on earth a term with a scientific basis gets to be "street slang".
I would think that it is the other way round Tony, it's more likely to have been a term that was in colloquial usage that has been adopted as a more standard 'common' name for certain species.

In "Flies of the British Isles", published in 1951, Colyer & Hammond mention a number of names used for members of the horsefly family, and state:
"Of these, the term 'cleg' appears to be generally used today in respect of Haematopota species..."
It may just be that, in the areas that they tended to do their entomology, other terms were used for different horseflies.
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