What Bug Is That? The guide to Australian insect families.

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In Australia, adults of Axinota pictiventris Wulp hover over low vegetation near forest margins.  In Africa, curtonotid adults are often attracted to mammal dung, and often occupy burrows of mammals (particularly aardvarks) in large numbers. Larvae of Curtonotum have been found in damaged egg pods of locusts ( Schistocerca ) in Africa.


Australasian curtonotids are moderately small flies with a conspicuously humped thorax and narrow, unmarked wings. Their main diagnostic features include:

Postocellar bristles convergent; one reclinate orbital bristle present only (additional proclinate orbital bristle in some foreign taxa); fine vibrissa present; face entirely sclerotised; pedicel of antenna with dorsal slit; arista long and plumose; prosternum broad, with precoxal bridge narrowed or interrupted; presutural supra-alar bristle large; anepisternum with two large posterior bristles; one large katepisternal bristle, which is closer to mid coxa than to upper margin of katepisternum; wing, on much of central and anterior part, glassy and devoid of microtrichia; vein C broken in both humeral and subcostal positions; vein Sc complete, terminating close to the apex of R1; cells bm and dm confluent; cell cup enclosed, but very small.


Curtonotids have an extensive, but discontinuous world distribution. Africa is apparently the only region where all three known genera live. Only one species of Axinota ( Apsinota in error), the only Australasian genus, has been found in Australia's far north.

  • Curtonotum sp.