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Key to Mycetophila species present in New Zealand

This LUCID identification key helps to distinguish species of Mycetophila, the largest genus of fungus gnats (Mycetophiliade), which show poor morphological variety within New Zealand.

Shaun Thompson, Julia Kasper, Thomas Rosenberg, Olivia Vergara

Mycetophila colorata.

Mycetophila colorata. Image: Uwe Schneehagen (2019). CC BY-SA 4.0 via iNaturalist.

All 54 of New Zealand’s described endemic species of Mycetophila are included in this key and can be selected to view an image of the habitus and/or the wing. The key can be used for wet or dry specimens but diagnostic colour patterns may differ depending on the specimen’s age or their type of preservation.

The most useful character to identify Mycetophila is the wing markings, which can be divided into absent, a central spot, cloudy or very strong, and the number of hairs/bristles on the pteropleurite.

Another obvious feature is the knee spot at the hind femur.

But most important is the mid tibia spine formula. The formula describes the number of spines dorsally, externally, ventrally and internally on the mid tibia. Due to natural variation the mid tibia formula can be slightly different from the description.

More specific characters are the shape or colour of the antennae (especially for the most common species Mycetophila fagi with their stripy flagellum) or the tarsi (e.g. M. crassitarsis).

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System Requirements

This key will run on most browsers, including Chrome, Firefox, IE and Microsoft Edge.

Although this key is not optimised for portable devices, it displays OK on tablets.


Thompson S, Kasper J, Rosenberg T, Vergara O. 2021. Key to Mycetophila species present in New Zealand.
Accessed at
Date of access: -- current date --


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