The main difference between house flies and cluster flies is that house flies are smaller and grow up to ¼ inches, whereas cluster flies are larger and grow up to ½ inches.
In short, house flies and cluster flies are two different families of the order Diptera. And, generally, both flies cause harm to households.
Key Areas Covered
1. What are House Flies
– Definition, Characteristics, Importance
2. What are Cluster Flies
– Definition, Characteristics, Importance
3. Similarities Between House Flies and Cluster Flies
– Outline of Common Features
4. Difference Between House Flies and Cluster Flies
– Comparison of Key Differences
Cluster Flies, House Flies
What are House Flies
House flies are flies of the suborder Cyclorrhapha. Most house flies live in houses. Generally, adult house flies are gray to black in color. They have longitudinal lines on the thorax. House flies have slightly hairy bodies and a single pair of membranous wings. They have red eyes that are further apart. Moreover, the eyes of the females are larger. Apart from that, the length of the house fly is ¼ of an inch while the wingspan of an adult fly is ½ inch. The wings of the females are wider than the wings of the males.
Furthermore, female house flies lay around 500 eggs in their lifetime. The color of the eggs is white, and the length of the egg is 1/6 inch. In general, the fly deposits eggs in suitable places such as dead and decaying organic matter. These organic matters include carrion, feces, and food waste. The larvae hatch from the eggs within a single day, and they have a pale whiteish color. The length of the larvae is around 1/8 inch. Importantly, larval development takes around two weeks under optimal conditions.
What are Cluster Flies
Cluster flies are flies that belong to the genus Pollenia. The main important feature of cluster flies is that they do not lay eggs on human food. Therefore, they are harmless to humans. However, cluster flies are parasitic on earthworms. The most significant feature of cluster flies is that they lay eggs near earthworm burrows. Thus, the larvae of the cluster flies feed on the worms. However, the biology of cluster flies is not known as the other insects such as caterpillars and bees.
Behavior-wise, cluster flies invade homes in the fall. Therefore, they turn into wintertime pests. They are noticeable and become active in homes, particularly on warm winter days. One of the major drawbacks of cluster flies is that they cause damage to buildings, occupants, and furniture. Cluster flies show a wide distribution, and they live in Britain and Europe. Altogether, there are eight species of cluster flies. In New Zealand and Australia, there are around 30 species of cluster flies.
Similarities Between House Flies and Cluster Flies
- House flies and cluster flies are two types of flies that live in households.
- Both belong to two different families of the same order.
- They become common in the hot months of summer.
- They are present in fruit salads and potatoes.
Difference Between House Flies and Cluster Flies
House flies refer to a cosmopolitan dipteran fly of the genus Musca (M. domestica) that is often found in human habitations and may act as a mechanical vector of diseases, while cluster flies refer to the flies that enter buildings in large numbers while looking for a place to overwinter.
House flies belong to the genus Musca under the family Muscidae, while cluster flies belong to the genus Pollenia under the family Polleniidae.
House flies are smaller and grow up to ¼ inches, while cluster flies are larger and grow up to ½ inches.
House flies are gray in color, while cluster flies are black in color.
House flies have golden color hairs, while cluster flies do not have hairs.
House flies zip quickly through a room, while cluster flies are more sluggish.
In brief, house flies and cluster flies are two types of household flies that belong to the order Diptera. Generally, house flies are smaller and they grow up to ¼ inches. They are gray in color. In addition, they have golden color hairs. House flies zip quickly. In comparison, cluster flies are larger and grow up to ½ inch, and are generally black in color. However, cluster flies are more sluggish. Therefore, the main difference between house flies and cluster flies is their size and color.
- Wikimedia Foundation. (2022, November 26). Housefly. Wikipedia. Retrieved December 25, 2022
- Wikimedia Foundation. (2022, November 9). Cluster fly. Wikipedia. Retrieved December 25, 2022
- “Common house fly, Musca domestica” By Nephron – Own work (Public Domain) via Commons Wikimedia
- “Pollenia-sp-Cluster-fly-20100718a” By Myron G. Schultz – Own Work (CC BY-SA 3.0) via Commons Wikimedia
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