Crane Fly or Mosquito Hawk Information

Protect your home or business from crane flies by learning techniques for identification and control.

Black, red or yellow
Long legs & elongated faces
Wing colors vary

Treatment

How do I get rid of crane flies?

What Orkin Does

Your local Orkin technician is trained to help manage crane flies and similar pests. Since every building or home is different, your Orkin technician will design a unique fly treatment program for your situation.

Orkin can provide the right solution to keep crane flies in their place...out of your home, or business.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Behavior, Diet & Habits

Understanding Crane Flies

Appearance

  • Color: Adult crane flies are black, red, or yellow in color, depending on species.

  • Size: Crane flies may be mistaken at times for mosquitoes, but they are significantly larger with extremely long legs and have elongated faces.

  • Wings: Crane fly wings may be transparent, brown, grayish-black or brownish-yellow. Some crane flies rest with extended wings, while others fold their wings flat.

  • Females: Female crane flies have extended abdomens, which house eggs and are capped with an ovipositor. Although these ovipositors appear similar to stingers, they are harmless and are only used for reproductive purposes.

Diet

Adults feed on nectar from flowers or other outdoor plants. Crane flies lay their eggs in the ground, where larvae feed on decaying wood and vegetation.

Habitat

Adult crane flies prefer to dwell in wet, mossy, old and open woodlands. Crane flies survive for several days, with most species living only long enough to complete the reproductive cycle.

More Information

Some Common names for crane flies include:

  • Jimmy spinners

  • Mosquito hawks

  • Mosquito eaters

  • Mosquito nippers

  • Gollywhoppers

  • Gallinippers

Although they are known as daddy long legs in the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, South Africa, Ireland, and New Zealand, they are not at all similar to the arachnid that goes by the same name in the United States.

Crane flies may be mistaken at times for mosquitoes, but they are significantly larger with extremely long legs and have elongated faces. Female crane flies have extended abdomens, which house eggs and are capped with an ovipositor. Although these ovipositors appear similar to stingers, they are harmless and are only used for reproductive purposes.

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