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Recommended by!The European families of the Diptera – Identification, diagnosis, biology
[ Category: Manuals en general textbooks on Diptera. · Views: 32767 · Comments: 7 ]
AuthorPjotr Oosterbroek
EditionEnglish edition.
Finally there is a compact English handbook for the identification of the Diptera families of Europe. The Dutch version was published a year earlier and it has been translated, even more thoroughly tested and revised where necessary. Several parts of the key and family discussions have been updated to deal with a number of aberrant or variable groups and additional figures have been added. Species numbers for the Netherlands and Belgium have been replaced by the number of European genera and an estimate of the number of species.
The Introduction clearly states the book’s history, geographical scope and systematic context and gives a broader view of “the Diptera”. The Classification chapter itself is rather general in content and it mostly is a table with the actual classification of the 132 families in the key. Terminology used in the book is covered by more than ten pages and covers every term used in the keys, giving references to figures illustrating the feature or cross referring to a larger feature that is more thoroughly discussed.

Next follows the Identification key, which is extensively illustrated, usually with the text on the right page and the figures on the left. This allows the use of the key with very little need to turn pages to see relevant illustrations. Some pages with figures look a little crowded which is the result of the addition of figures after the revision. Since the figures are not all from the same source the styles vary but this is an aesthetic objection only.

At several instances in the key remarks have been added to assist in the use of the key or to indicate one or more groups that appear elsewhere in the key but that have a similar combination of characters. The choice was made to precede these remarks with “>>>” rather than use a smaller or different font for the remark which would have more clearly indicated their status as remark.

The use of the keys is straightforward, though some may have to get used to the characters used for some of the main divisions. Characters like the number and position of the costal breaks or the presence or absence of vibrissae, that were frequently used in older keys, are avoided for major divisions in the key, either because families are not constant in that respect or because the features are not always easily interpreted. A number of specialists have tested the key using both “everyday” taxa but also some aberrant or rather outlandish taxa from the edges of the area covered. This should ensure that all European flies can be identified to the family level. And sure enough, the chloropid Dicraeus raptus (Haliday, 1838) keys out without any problem, even though the cross vein DM-Cu is absent (rather uncharacteristic in the family) and wingless Sciaridae run to the correct couplet every time.

After the keys all families are discussed in brief chapters with sections dealing with systematics (classification in general terms, number of European genera, estimate of number of species in Europe), diagnosis and biology and references to important literature.

These chapters have also been updated in the translation and even more care has been taken to mention important aberrations. Still, so many families have one or more aberrant taxa making it impossible to include them all (for example the aberrant wing venation of D. raptus mentioned above is not given). Using the name Icherya rather than Icerya for a coccoid (in Cryptochaetidae biology) is one of the very few minor errors that could be found.

The list with references is extensive and is followed by a list of all illustrations, credits for the use of illustrations and the acknowledgements.

The book is well produced. An added bonus, for easier use of the book, is that the insides of the cover have been used to give illustrations with morphological terms (front cover) and an abstract key for quick reference to parts of the key for more experienced users. Its reasonable size and prize make this book a must for every dipterist and otherwise interested entomologist.
PublisherKNNV Publishing, Utrecht, Netherlands
Click for more information
Added on26.12.2009
Comment on The European families of the Diptera – Identification, diagnosis, biology
 PIERRE MILLE - 07. March 2010 - 9:59 o'clock

I am new to this forum and I was wondering how much is this book? I live in France and 25 km from Paris.

best wishes Pierre
 Maherjos - 07. April 2010 - 13:28 o'clock
My residence is in Motril, Granada, Spain.
How could I buy this book?
Can pay with Paypal?
 Alvesgaspar - 09. April 2010 - 6:45 o'clock
I'm very interested in this book. Surprisingly it doesn't show on Amazon UK or Amazon US
 helenw - 06. June 2010 - 6:49 o'clock
Hi - in case you haven't managed to locate a copy, I just got mine from Pemberley Books -
The price is £59.00 from them if you go direct, plus £4.00 for postage (within the UK - guess it would be more to mainland Europe). However, I located this bookseller through an agent - who will find a seller but do charge commission, so my total cost was £70.00. Best wishes, helenw
 21392 - 16. November 2010 - 9:50 o'clock
I'd like that I have this book, but to now I couldn't buy it.
even I tried with send mail to book's author, but didn't have any utility!
I'm still trying to obtain it...!
 Sara21392 - 06. March 2011 - 14:56 o'clock
Sorry for my delay, Thank you very much helenw :)
Best wishes, Sara
 Mourgues - 01. April 2015 - 13:23 o'clock
For exemple available here :[]=&term=The+European+families+of+the+Diptera+%EF%BF%BD+Identification%2C+diagnosis%2C+biology
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24 November 2017 10:13


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20.11.17 15:09
Pls sign to help save Botanophila fonsecai https://home.38deg
seca. Thx

17.11.17 14:22
Thanks Paul, interesting point

16.11.17 13:44
'Holding' might not be the perfect description. Apparently the armature makes contact with sensitive places on the female, coaxing her to agree to mate.

16.11.17 13:43
Is was not quite sure whether the word would apply correctly, but, yes, that is okay.

15.11.17 11:29
How about armature, would that fit? based on http://onlinelibra
it would seem that these spines etc are used to hold the female!

14.11.17 09:22
All spines, ridges, lobes, etc. on the femur.

14.11.17 08:36
I think bewaffnung is like weapons (on femur 1).

13.11.17 13:10
Hello can any1 tell me how to translate bewaffnung des femur 1? Thx

26.10.17 13:37
Yes it looks like a typo error e instead of a Thanks you

26.10.17 09:54

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