Scorpionflies and Hanging Flies

Order: Mecoptera

Five families and 33 species in Australia. Both sexes have strongly veined, membranous wings, both pairs of approximate equal size, with the exception of the genus Apterapanorpa, which are wingless. Legs long and slender, equipped with claws, and head with elongated projection with mandibulate mouthparts at tip. Males of some species have upturned ‘scorpion-like’ terminal segment on abdomen. Some species predate on other insects, using their hooked claws to seize passing prey, while others are scavengers of dead or dying animals or are herbivores.