; order Diptera, suborder Cyclorrapha)
Family of rather elongate, medium-sized flies, which have a long, often jointed proboscis, used to obtain nectar from flowers. The palps are reduced and the ptilinal groove (see ptilinum) is sometimes shortened. The male sixth, seventh, and eighth abdominal tergites are lost, exposing the genitalia. The abdomen may be down-curved posteriorly. In general, the adults resemble bees and solitary or social wasps in colour and appearance, and may be mistaken for them. Their eggs are specially adapted to cling to host wasps, on which the larvae will feed as endoparasites. Adult conopids are regular visitors to flowers. The family is distributed throughout the world, and there are more than 800 species.
Subjects: Zoology and Animal Sciences.