Phoridae - Puliciphora sp.
Size: 1.72 mm
Group Guild Status
Eutroglophile? Scavenger? Rare
This species is rather anomalous. We know it only from a single specimen, a female, taken by KCSP staff on November 17, 2006. The specimen label says “off dead cricket”, but we do not know if this refers to Gryllus multipulsator or Ceuthophilus pima. The specimen label also said “white fly”, which likely implies that the animal was a teneral (recently emerged individual). There is no information available on where in the cave this animal was sampled.
In concert with the original label statement of the animal being “white”, the sample appears very “ghost-like” in that it seems to consist only of the exoskeleton of the animal, which is more transparent than white. However, it is reasonable that it may have appeared white when alive.
Species of Puliciphora are very common scavenging flies, and have been recorded from caves in Trinidad (Disney and Sinclair 2008) and Mexico (Reddell and Elliot 1973). Members of the genus are probably a widely dispersed but poorly recorded group in caves.
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