ZooKeys 336: 61–78, doi: 10.3897/zookeys.336.6016
Updated Italian checklist of Soldier Flies (Diptera, Stratiomyidae)
Franco Mason 1,2
1 MiPAAF, Corpo Forestale dello Stato, CNBFVR, Centro Nazionale Biodiversità Forestale “Bosco Fontana“ di Verona, Via Carlo Ederle 16/a, I – 37100 Verona, Italy
2 Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Istituto di Biologia Agroambientale e Forestale (CNR–IBAF). Via Salaria km 29, 300 – 00015 Monterotondo (Rome, Italy)

Corresponding author: Franco Mason (fmason@tin.it)

Academic editor: Martin Hauser

received 26 July 2013 | accepted 16 September 2013 | Published 27 September 2013

(C) 2013 Franco Mason. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 3.0 (CC-BY), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

For reference, use of the paginated PDF or printed version of this article is recommended.

Citation: Mason F (2013) Updated Italian checklist of Soldier Flies (Diptera, Stratiomyidae). ZooKeys 336: 61–78. doi: 10.3897/zookeys.336.6016


An updated checklist for Stratiomyidae of Italy is presented. Previous knowledge and information are put together in a comprehensive way, integrated also with results obtained by sampling with Malaise traps in some of the test areas of the LIFE+ project ManFor C.BD.

At the time of writing, with 91 known species, the Italian fauna of Stratiomyidae is the richest in Europe. Neopachygaster meromelas (Dufour, 1841) and Zabrachia minutissima (Zetterstedt, 1838) are new to the Italian fauna. A comprehensive key to the European species of Chorisops Rondani, 1856 is given.


Italy, identification keys, faunistic, checklist, forest, Life Project


In the recent decades, stimulated by the monograph of Rozkošný (1982, 1983), faunistic research on Stratiomyidae has received a remarkable stimulus throughout Europe. In Italy the latest studies are reported in the following contributions: Adamo (2008), Mason (1988a), Mason (1988b), Mason (1989), Biondi et al. (1991), Troiano (1995), Troiano and Toscano (1995), Mason and Rozkošný (2003), Mason (2003), Mason (2004), Mason (2005), Mason et al. (2006), Mason and Rozkošný (2008), Whitmore et al. (2008), Stuke (2008) and Mason et al. (2009). The faunistic data collected in this paper (see Appendix) are preliminary to the biodiversity studies in the framework of the project LIFE09 ENV/IT/000078 ManFor C.BD., “Managing forests for multiple purposes: carbon, biodiversity and socio–economic wellbeing” and were partly integrated by sampling with Malaise traps in some of the project test areas. The Italian species are listed in Table 1, according to the criteria of the “Checklist of the Italian Fauna” (Minelli et al. 1995; Mason and Krivosheina 1995). The identifications were made using Rozkošný (1982, 1983), Troiano (1995), Troiano and Toscano (1995) and Krivosheina and Rozkošný (1990). The nomenclature and the list of the species known to Italy follows “Fauna Europaea” (Rozkošný 2012). Abbreviations of the collections: FMCV (Franco Mason, Verona, Italy); MCSNG (Museo Civico di Storia Naturale, Genova, Italy) CNBFVR (Centro Nazionale Biodiversità Forestale “Bosco Fontana“ Verona, Italy).

Table 1.

Updated Italian checklist of Stratiomyidae. Abbreviations: Italian administrative regions (cf. Minelli et al. 1995). N = Northern Italy: Em = Emilia-Romagna, FVG = Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Li = Liguria, Lo = Lombardy, Pi = Piedmont, TAA = Trentino-Alto Adige, V = Venetia, VA = Val d'Aosta. S = Peninisular Italy: Abr = Abruzzo, Ba = Basilicata, Ca = Calabria, Cp = Campania, La = Latium, Ma = Marches, Mo = Molise, Pu = Apulia, To = Tuscany, Um = Umbria. Si = Sicily and small circum-Sicilian islands, Sa = Sardinia and small circum-Sardinian islands.

Taxa N S Sa Si
Em FVG Li Lo Pi TAA VA V Abr Ba Ca Cp La Ma Mo Pu To Um Sa Si
1. Actina chalybea Meigen, 1804
2. Adoxomyia dahlii (Meigen, 1830)
3. Adoxomyia lindneri Dušek & Rozkošný, 1963
4. Alliocera graeca Saunders, 1845
5. Beris chalybata (Forster, 1771)
6. Beris clavipes (Linnaeus, 1767)
7. Beris fuscipes Meigen, 1820
8. Beris geniculata Curtis, 1830
9. Beris morrisii Dale, 1841
10. Beris strobli Dušek & Rozkošný, 1968
11. Beris vallata (Forster, 1771)
12. Chloromyia formosa (Scopoli, 1763)
13. Chloromyia speciosa (Macquart, 1834)
14. Chorisops caroli Troiano, 1995
15. Chorisops masoni Troiano & Toscano, 1995
16. Chorisops nagatomii Rozkošný, 1979
17. Chorisops tibialis (Meigen, 1820)
18. Chorisops tunisiae (Becker, 1915)
19. Clitellaria ephippium (Fabricius, 1775)
20. Eupachygaster tarsalis (Zetterstedt, 1842)
21. Hermetia illucens (Linnaeus, 1758)
22. Lasiopa calva (Meigen, 1822)
23. Lasiopa krkensis Lindner, 1938
24. Lasiopa pseudovillosa Rozkošný, 1983
25. Lasiopa tsacasi Dušek & Rozkošný, 1970
26. Lasiopa villosa (Fabricius, 1794)
27. Microchrysa flavicornis (Meigen, 1822)
28. Microchrysa polita (Linnaeus, 1822)
29. Nemotelus (Camptopelta) nigrinus Fallén, 1817
30. Nemotelus (Nemotelus) anchora Loew, 1846
31. Nemotelus (Nemotelus) argentifer Loew, 1846
32. Nemotelus (Nemotelus) crenatus Egger, 1859
33. Nemotelus (Nemotelus) cylindricornis Rozkošný, 1977
34. Nemotelus (Nemotelus) lasiops Loew, 1846
35. Nemotelus (Nemotelus) latiusculus Loew, 1871
36. Nemotelus (Nemotelus) longirostris Wiedemann, 1824
37. Nemotelus (Nemotelus) maculiventris Bigot, 1861
38. Nemotelus (Nemotelus) nigrifrons Loew, 1846
39. Nemotelus (Nemotelus) niloticus Olivier, 1811
40. Nemotelus (Nemotelus) notatus Zetterstedt, 1842
41. Nemotelus (Nemotelus) pantherinus (Linnaeus, 1758)
42. Nemotelus (Nemotelus) proboscideus Loew, 1846
43. Neopachygaster meromelas (Dufour, 1841)
44. Odontomyia angulata (Panzer, 1798)
45. Odontomyia annulata (Meigen, 1822)
46. Odontomyia argentata (Fabricius, 1794)
47. Odontomyia cephalonica Strobl, 1898
48. Odontomyia discolor Loew, 1846
49. Odontomyia flavissima (Rossi, 1790)
50. Odontomyia hydroleon (Linnaeus, 1758)
51. Odontomyia ornata (Meigen, 1822)
52. Odontomyia tigrina (Fabricius, 1775)
53. Oplodontha viridula (Fabricius, 1775)
54. Oxycera analis Wiedemann in Meigen, 1822
55. Oxycera fallenii Stæger, 1844
56. Oxycera germanica (Szilády, 1932)
57. Oxycera leonina (Panzer, 1798)
58. Oxycera locuples Loew, 1857
59. Oxycera marginata Loew, 1859
60. Oxycera meigenii Stæger, 1844
61. Oxycera morrisii Curtis, 1833
62. Oxycera muscaria (Fabricius, 1794)
63. Oxycera nigricornis Olivier, 1812
64. Oxycera pardalina Meigen, 1822
65. Oxycera pseudoamoena Dušek & Rozkošný, 1974
66. Oxycera pygmaea (Fallén, 1817)
67. Oxycera rara (Scopoli, 1763)
68. Oxycera terminata Meigen, 1822
69. Oxycera trilineata (Linnaeus, 1767)
70. Oxycera varipes Loew in Heyden, 1870
71. Pachygaster atra (Panzer, 1798)
72. Pachygaster leachii Curtis, 1824
73. Sargus albibarbus Loew, 1855
74. Sargus bipunctatus (Scopoli, 1763)
75. Sargus cuprarius (Linnaeus, 1758)
76. Sargus flavipes Meigen, 1822
77. Sargus harderseni Mason & Rozkošný, 2008
78. Sargus iridatus (Scopoli, 1763)
79. Sargus rufipes Wahlberg, 1854
80. Stratiomys cenisia Meigen, 1822
81. Stratiomys chamaeleon (Linnaeus, 1758)
82. Stratiomys concinna Meigen, 1822
83. Stratiomys equestris Meigen, 1835
84. Stratiomys hispanica (Pleske, 1901)
85. Stratiomys longicornis (Scopoli, 1763)
86. Stratiomys potamida Meigen, 1822
87. Stratiomys rubricornis (Bezzi, 1896)
88. Stratiomys singularior (Harris, 1776)
89. Vanoyia tenuicornis (Macquart, 1834)
90. Zabrachia minutissima (Zetterstedt, 1838)
91. Zabrachia tenella (Jaennicke, 1866)
Total 37 19 29 25 38 39 10 32 32 9 14 6 44 10 2 14 26 6 26 28
Short notes on the species new to the Italian fauna
Neopachygaster meromelas (Dufour, 1841)

The larva of Neopachygaster meromelas has been described in detail by Rozkošný (1983) and by Stubbs and Drake (2001). The material examined was collected in Latium, Roma at “Tenuta della Cervelletta” 41°54'41.55"N, 12°34'57.15"E. Nine larvae were collected on 7.ii.2005 under decaying bark of a trunk of Populus sp. partially submerged in water; 3 ♂♂ and 6 ♀♀ emerged from reared larvae on v–vi/2005, M. Mei leg. (FMCV). Neopachygaster meromelas is a European species, known from Fennoscandia to the Pyrenees and North Caucasus (Rozkošný 1983), and has been recorded from the following countries: Belarus, Belgium, British Islands, Corsica, Czech Republic, Finland, France (mainland), Germany, Hungary, Poland, Russia (North and Northwest), Slovakia, Spain (mainland), Sweden (Rozkošný 2012) and Italy (this paper). In Italy Neopachygaster meromelas is known only in central Italy at “Tenuta della Cervelletta”, a small natural area (about 44 ha) located in the Northeast suburbs of Rome which is a relict wetland (Mason and Mei 2002). This site represents the southernmost European record of the species (cf. Rozkošný 1983).

Figure 47.

Number of species of the Stratiomyidae in the Italian administrative regions. N = Northern Italy: Em = Emilia-Romagna, FVG = Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Li = Liguria, Lo = Lombardy, Pi = Piedmont, TAA = Trentino-Alto Adige, V = Venetia, Va = Val Val d'Aosta. S = Peninsular Italy: Abr = Abruzzo, Ba = Basilicata, Ca = Calabria, Cp = Campania, La = Latium, Ma = Marches, Mo = Molise, Pu = Apulia, To = Tuscany, Um = Umbria. Si = Sicily and small circum-Sicilian islands. Sa = Sardinia and small circum-Sardinian islands.

Zabrachia minutissima (Zetterstedt, 1838)

Venetia Region: Rovigo province, Porto Caleri, loc. Bosco Giardino, 45°05'N, 12°19'E, 12.viii–8.ix.2004, Malaise Trap, 2 ♀♀, D. Sommaggio leg. (FMCV); Emilia–Romagna, Ferrara province, Isola Bianca, LIPU Oasi, Retro Duna, 44°53'N, 11°38'E, 4.vii–1.viii.2004, Malaise Trap, 1 ♀, D. Sommaggio leg. (FMCV); Rovigo province, Porto Caleri, Bosco intermedio, 45°06'N, 12°19'E, 8.ix–1.x.2004, Malaise Trap, 1 ♀, D. Sommaggio leg. (FMCV); same data, but 20.vii–12.vii.2004, 1 ♀, (FMCV). Regione Veneto, Belluno province, Cellarda, Vincheto di Cellarda [State Nature Reserve], 230 m, UTM Latitude: 46°0'43"N, 11°58'32"E, 1–15.viii.2007, Window Trap T5 (cf. Audisio et al. 2008), G. Gatti & M. Dal Cortivo leg. (FMCV).

Distribution. Zabrachia minutissima is a Eurasian species (Rozkošný 1983): Czech Republic, Denmark (mainland), Finland, France (mainland), Germany, Greece (mainland), Hungary, Norway (mainland), Poland, Russia, Spain (mainland), Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine, East Palaeartic and Near East (Rozkošný 2012).

Other records new to the regions

Hermetia illucens is new to Calabria (Reggio Calabria, Pellaro, 19.ix.2011, photo by Francesco D’Aleo (2012)). Stratiomys cenisia is new to Sicily (Trapani 20.v.2009), and Clitellaria ephippium is new to Marche (12.vii.2010, photo by Marco Paglialunga). All these data were posted in the “Forum Entomologi italiani” [Forum of Italian Entomologists] www.entomologiitaliani.net/forum (last accessed 16 April 2012).

Notes and key to European species of Chorisops Rondani, 1856: 173

The nomenclatorial history of the name Chorisops Rondani has been recently clarified by O’Hara et al. (2011).

In Europe, at the present time, five species of Chorisops are known: Chorisops caroli Troiano, 1995, Chorisops masoni Troiano & Toscano, 1995, Chorisops nagatomii Rozkošný, 1979, Chorisops tibialis (Meigen, 1820) and Chorisops tunisiae (Becker, 1915). Two of these, Chorisops caroli and Chorisops masoni, are probably endemic to Italy (Troiano 1995; Mason et al. 2006; Mason et al. 2009) (Figs 2–6).

Figures 1–6.

Chorisops, habitus: 1 Chorisops caroli Troiano, 1995 ♂ 2 Chorisops masoni Troiano & Toscano, 1995 ♂ 3 Chorisops nagatomii Rozkošný, 1979 ♂ 4 Chorisops tibialis (Meigen, 1820) ♂ 5 Chorisops tunisiae (Becker, 1915) ♂ 6 Chorisops tunisiae ♀, (drawns by Mason F). Scale bar = 1 mm.

As in other Beridinae (Woodley 2001) three subspherical spermathecae are present in the females of Chorisops (Figs 7, 8). The sensory pits on the external side of the first flagellomere, are up to four different types: finger-like (A), sunken finger-like in a pit (B), subconical (C) and stick-like inside a pit (D) (cf. Figs 9, 10). The males of Chorisops nagatomii (cf. also Stubbs and Drake 2001), were observed in a swarm over a shrub in a grassland and on flowers of Hedera helix L., in a floodplain forest (D. Birtele, pers. comm. 2012). In Italy, the peak of the flight period of Chorisops nagatomii and Chorisops masoni is generally between the second half of August and the first half of September (cf. Mason 2004), about one month later than the flight period of Chorisops tibialis. A new record is here reported for Piedmont for Chorisops nagatomii: 1 ♂ Alessandria province, Piovera, 44°57'43"N, 8°44'5"E, x.1933, G. C. Doria (in MCSNG).

Figures 7–10.

7 Spermathecae of Chorisops tunisiae (Becker)8 Spermathecae of Chorisops tibialis (Meigen) 9 Antenna of Chorisops tunisiae (Becker) 10 External side of the first (basal) flagellomere of Chorisops tunisiae (Becker). Antennal sensilla: A finger-like B sunken finger-like C subconical D stick-like.

Key to the European species of Chorisops

Despite the availability of a relatively large amount of newly collected material of Chorisops, I have not been able to find any reliable external character of diagnostic value, except for the different colouring of the anepisternum and postpronotal callus (cf. Figs 11 and 12) and in the relative darkening of the wing pterostigma (Figs 13A, 13B). A reliable identification is possible only by examining the genitalia of both sexes.

Figures 11–20.

11 Thorax in lateral view of Chorisops nagatomii Rozkošný 12 Thorax in lateral view of Chorisops tunisiae (Becker) 13 Wing pterostigma: A Chorisops tunisiae (Becker) B Chorisops tibialis (Meigen) 14–18 Male abdomen (dorsal view) of: 14 Chorisops caroli Troiano 15 Chorisops masoni Troiano & Toscano 16 Chorisops nagatomii Rozkošný 17 Chorisops tibialis (Meigen) 18 Chorisops tunisiae (Becker) 19–20 Male abdomen (ventral view) of: 19 Chorisops tibialis (Meigen) 20 Chorisops tunisiae (Becker).

Key to males
1 Pterostigma light yellow (Fig. 13A) Chorisops tunisiae (Becker)
Pterostigma usually darker (Fig. 13B) 2
2 Abdominal tergites mainly brown (Figs 5, 17) Chorisops tibialis (Meigen)
Tergites with more extensive yellow pattern (Figs 2, 3, 4, 6) 3
3 Tergites with only a narrow brown preapical grooves (Figs 4, 16); genitalia as in Figs 28–31 Chorisops nagatomii Rozkošný
Tergites with different colour pattern (Figs 2, 3, 14, 15) 4
4 Scutum shining green; genitalia as in Figs 25–27 Chorisops masoni Troiano & Toscano
Scutum shining blue; genitalia as in Figs 21–24 Chorisops caroli Troiano
Figures 21–31.

Chorisops caroli: 21 Genital capsule 22 Genital capsule (lateral view)23 Aedeagal complex 24 Aedeagal complex (lateral view) 25–27 Chorisops masoni: 25 Genital capsule 26 Genital capsule (lateral view) 27 Aedeagal complex (ventral view) 28–31 Chorisops nagatomii: 28 Genital capsule 29 Genital capsule (lateral view) 30 Aedeagal complex (ventral view) 31 Aedeagal complex (lateral view); (redrawn from Rozkošný (1982)Troiano (1995) and Troiano and Toscano (1995).

Key to females
1 Pterostigma light yellow (Fig. 13A), anepisternum and postronotal callus yellow (Fig. 12), pleural sclerites bright yellow, except for the contrastingly black katepisternum (Fig. 20) Chorisops tunisiae (Becker)
Pterostigma darker (Fig. 13B), anepisternum shining green (Fig. 11), pleural sclerites always dark (Fig. 19) 2
2 Genital furca with rounded corners (Figs 40, 42) 3
Genital furca with pointed corners (Figs 41, 43) 4
3 Genital furca massive, laterally enlarged, with a rounded median aperture (Fig. 40) Chorisops caroli Troiano
Genital furca with a relatively wide transverse median aperture (Fig. 42) Chorisops nagatomii Rozkošný
4 Genital furca with developed lateral wings (Fig. 41) Chorisops masoni Troiano
Genital furca without developed lateral wings (Fig. 43) Chorisops tibialis (Meigen)
Figures 32–45.

Chorisops tibialis: 32 Genital capsule 33 Genital capsule (lateral view) 34 Aedeagal complex 35 Aedeagal complex (lateral view) 36–39 Chorisops tunisiae: 36 Genital capsule 37 Genital capsule (lateral lateral view) 38 Aedeagal complex 39 Aedeagal complex (lateral view) 40–44 Genital furca of: 40 Chorisops caroli 41 Chorisops masoni 42 Chorisops nagatomii 43 Chorisops tibialis 44 Chorisops tunisiae 45 Sugenital plate of Chorisops tunisiae; (redrawn from Rozkošný (1982)Troiano (1995) and Troiano and Toscano (1995).

Short faunistic notes

With newly recorded Eupachygaster meromelas and Zabrachia minutissima, the Italian fauna includes at the present time 91 species. The species probably endemic to Italy are: Chorisops caroli, Chorisops masoni and Sargus harderseni (Fig. 46), the last recently described (Mason and Rozkošný 2008). The unique Italian record of Vanoya tenuicornis (Macquart, 1834), (Mason and Mei 2002) represents the southernmost European distribution of this species. The different regional distributions (cf. Tab. 1, Fig. 1), are evidently dependent on the intensity of the faunistic investigations. From the point of view of conservation, in Italy the most threatened species of soldier flies are those that have larvae which live in springs and in coastal salt marshes, because of water pollution and the progressive fragmentation and destruction of such habitats. Their conservation should start with (cf. Rozkošný 2005) building a European red list of endangered species, according to the IUCN categories (IUCN 2008; Farkač et al. 2005) as recently achieved for the saproxylic Coleoptera (Nieto and Alexander 2010).

Figure 46.

Habitus of Sargus harderseni Mason & Rozkošný, 2008 (♂), (drawn by Mason F).


Thanks are due to Rudolf Rozkošný (Brno, Czech Republic), Norman E. Woodley (Washington, USA) and Martin Hauser (Sacramento, USA), who kindly review the manuscript and the English. Daniele Birtele, Maurizio Mei (Rome, Italy), Roberto Poggi (Genova, Italy), Daniele Sommaggio (Ferrara, Italy) and Stefano Vanin (Huddersfield, UK) kindly provided some interesting material for this study. Massimo Lopresti (Verona, Italy) enhanced the quality of the figures and composed the tables. Part of the work that contributed to this publication has been funded in the framework of the project LIFE09 ENV/IT/000078 ManFor C.BD. “Managing forests for multiple purposes: carbon, biodiversity and socio–economic wellbeing”, coordinated by G. Matteucci CNR–IBAF, Rome, Italy. Thanks are due also to Alessandro Bottacci (Italian National Forest Service, Biodiversity Office, Rome) and Augusto Vigna Taglianti (University "La Sapienza", Rome) for their support to this research and to two anonymous reviewers for helpful comments on a earlier version of the manuscript.

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Diptera Stratiomyidae, identified by Mason F. 2012 and 2013. (doi: 10.3897/zookeys.336.6016.app) File format: Microsoft Excel file (xls).

Explanation note: Diptera Stratiomyidae collected by Malaise trap in the framework of the Project LIFE_09_ENV_IT_0000078.