Good General Reference Works for Diptera?

Any recommendations for a non-entomologist to get into fly ID and biology?

I’ve been getting more and more interested in flies recently. I was wondering whether anyone had any good resources to recommend for learning more about fly ID and biology.

I’m especially interested in a good reference book that gives an overview of the group, how to best make vouchers (is this what you call them? I’m from the plant world where we make herbarium specimens), and details about anatomy.

Cheers -
Dan

EDIT: I’m located in North America (PA, USA)

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Check this post https://forum.inaturalist.org/t/what-types-of-id-work-to-focus-on/15285/14 and there was another one about book/guides.

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Mandatory as a general introduction:
https://www.amazon.com/Flies-Natural-History-Diversity-Diptera/dp/1770851003

Also mandatory, the Manual of Nearctic Diptera (3 Volumes), available here:
https://esc-sec.ca/publications/aafc/

Though note that the taxonomy is badly out of date for many groups. Its keys are still largely usable.

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@edanko has a guide.

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I’m with you. I’d like an excellent, affordable guide on tachinids. If I remember correctly there is a newsletter called Tachinid Times which I found on the internet.

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If you want something technical but still easy for a non-entomologist, I’d recommend the following as a starting point:
https://www.amazon.com/Flower-Northeastern-America-Princeton-Guides/dp/0691189404

The manuals of Nearctic Diptera, as mentioned, are a good reference guide but they can be difficult at times (but they are free, so that’s nice) https://esc-sec.ca/publications/aafc/

https://www.amazon.com/Flies-Natural-History-Diversity-Diptera/dp/1770851003 is good reading if you want to get more into natural history / global biodiversity

If you’re just interested in field characters and photos, I’d suggest BugGuide.net or https://sites.google.com/view/flyguide

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Borror and deLong is not bad to family level. There is a pdf download (the book is expensive) but I have not tried it. https://newbooksinpolitics.com/political/borror-and-delongs-introduction-to-the-study-of-insects/

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Any ideas for narrower taxonomies? As in, say I know that my flies are Drosophilidae – can I get from there to genus? Or from Genus Drosophila to species? I know how to use technical keys.

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There’s a Drosophila key if you search it (can’t get a link now, but you can easily find it). And other genuses too, just search it in Google or in one of sources of science work, like ResearchGate.

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genera

I don’t think it matters so much to post a separate message about it. Genuses is a correct version too, btw.

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Yes. According to Dictionary.com, both plural forms are acceptable:

https://www.dictionary.com/browse/genuses#:~:text=noun%20plural%20genera%20(ˈdʒɛnərə)%20or,or%20more%20groups%20or%20species

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