New Jersey is home to a wide variety of flies, from small biting insects to larger species.
Knowing the different types of flies in New Jersey can help protect yourself and your home from these pests.
In this blog post, we’ll look at the various types of flies found in New Jersey, their characteristics, and what you can do to keep them away.
We’ll also discuss how to identify the different types of flies so you can make sure you know what type of fly is infesting your property.
Read on to learn all about the different types of flies in New Jersey!
1. African Fig Fly
The African Fig Fly, Zaprionus indianus, is a species of small, dark-colored fly that can be found throughout New Jersey. It is generally found in wooded areas near figs and other fruits. These flies feed on sap and juice from fruit and decaying plant material.
While not considered a human pest, they can be a nuisance to gardeners and farmers who grow fruits and vegetables. They can also be attracted to outdoor lights, making them a potential problem for homeowners. The African Fig Fly is one of the few types of flies in New Jersey that is capable of biting humans and animals.
While these bites are not considered dangerous or life-threatening, they can be highly irritating. To prevent bites from these flies, it is important to eliminate any potential sources of food or water that could attract them. Additionally, taking measures such as using insect repellents and keeping outdoor lights away from windows and doors can also help keep these pests away.
2. American Bluet Damselfly
The American Bluet Damselfly is one of the most common types of flies in New Jersey. This species is found near many aquatic habitats, from slow-moving streams to ponds and lakes. They are usually bright blue or green, with two pairs of wings held together in a V when in flight.
They feed on small insects, larvae, and other small aquatic creatures. While they do not cause any damage to humans, they can become a nuisance if they breed in large numbers. The American Bluet Damselfly has a reasonably extensive range across North America and can often be seen during summer.
They usually lay their eggs on the water’s surface, and their larvae develop quickly, emerging as adults after just a few weeks. They are also a popular food source for many fish species, making them an essential part of the aquatic food web. It’s always important to remember to respect this species by leaving its habitat undisturbed whenever possible.
3. American Hover Fly
The American Hover Fly is a common species of fly that can be found throughout New Jersey. These flies have distinct black and yellow bands along the abdomen and are larger than most other species of fly in the area.
They prefer to inhabit damp, grassy areas and can often be seen hovering around vegetation or near water sources. This fly species is an important pollinator, and it helps spread pollen between plants. While they aren’t considered pests, American Hover Flies should still be managed to avoid overpopulation.
4. Black Blow Fly
The Black Blow Fly (Phormia regina) is a fly native to New Jersey. The adults of this species are usually found in moist, shaded areas and can be recognized by their glossy black bodies with grayish stripes and reddish eyes. They have short antennae and four grayish-black wings.
Female Black Blow Flies can lay up to 250 eggs in moist soil near carrion or rotting food sources. These types of flies in New Jersey are known to pollinate various flowers and feed on decaying plant material.
The larvae, or maggots, feed on decaying material, such as animal carcasses, and play an essential role in the decomposition process. The Black Blow Fly is an integral part of the ecosystem in New Jersey and can be found in many areas throughout the state.
5. Bee-Like Robber Fly
The Bee-like Robber Fly (Laphria canis complex) is a fly found in New Jersey. It belongs to the Asilidae family and is known as a bee louse or bee-killers. This species has long antennae and a flattened body with a dark greyish-brown coloration.
Its wings are short, and its legs are elongated. Of the types of flies in New Jersey, these flies are usually seen near flowers or on vegetation. These flies are predators and feed on bees, spiders, and small insects. They use their long antennae to locate their prey, catch them with their legs and quickly devour them.
They do not cause significant damage to crops or plants but can be a nuisance if they swarm around an area. The Bee-like Robber Fly is not considered a vector of diseases or parasites in humans or animals.
6. American Rubyspot Damselfly
The American Rubyspot Damselfly (Hetaerina americana) is one of the most common types of flies in New Jersey. It is a slender, small-bodied insect with two pairs of wings, both of which are transparent. The adult has a bright red spot on its thorax, and its abdomen is primarily black with a metallic sheen.
This species can be seen near rivers, lakes, ponds, and in woodlands and gardens. It is a fast-flying insect and can often be found hovering over or perching on vegetation. These damselflies are beneficial predators of mosquitoes, flies, and other pests. They are an essential part of the food web in New Jersey and help to keep pest populations in check.
7. American Lady Butterfly
The American Lady Butterfly, also known as Vanessa virginiensis, is one of the most common species of butterfly found in New Jersey. It is found across the eastern United States and is a large and striking butterfly with orange and brown wings. This species prefers open woodlands, meadows, and roadsides, where it can easily find nectar sources like clover and asters.
American Lady butterflies have an extensive range of host plants, including thistles, nettles, mallows, and hollyhocks. They are typically active during the day and can be seen fluttering around gardens for food or basking in the sun on the ground. The American Lady Butterfly, one of the several types of flies in New Jersey, is a beneficial pollinator that helps to keep our ecosystem healthy.
It is important to protect their habitats and make sure they have enough food sources to maintain their population. Gardeners should consider planting nectar sources such as native flowers, which will attract these butterflies to their gardens. By doing so, we can ensure that these vibrant creatures remain a part of our natural landscape in New Jersey for years.
8. American Salmonfly
The American Salmonfly is a species of fly found in New Jersey. It is a large, dark-colored fly with golden markings on its wings. The Salmonfly is a predator and feeds on aquatic insects such as midges and stoneflies. It is most active during the warmer months and can be found near streams, ponds, and lakes.
While it is not considered a nuisance, it can be quite annoying as it often buzzes around people’s heads. It is essential to take precautionary measures when dealing with this fly species, as it can bite if provoked. We are yet to start this list of the different types of flies in New Jersey. Continue reading!
9. Aphrodite Fritillary Butterfly
The Aphrodite Fritillary butterfly is a nymphalid butterfly found in the eastern United States and Canada. This butterfly species is usually seen in open fields, meadows, and roadsides. It is a medium-sized butterfly with a wingspan of 1.25 to 1.75 inches.
It has yellowish-orange wings with dark brown markings resembling eyespots on both sides. The underside of the wings is lighter and slightly paler than the top side. The adult butterflies feed on flower nectar and often hover near flowering plants.
They are flies in New Jersey that lay their eggs on violets, lupines, and other pea family members. The caterpillars feed on the leaves and flowers of their host plant before pupating into adult butterflies.
In New Jersey, this species can be observed between June and August. It is an excellent addition to any garden or backyard that provides ample space and a variety of plants.
10. Bee Fly
The Bee Fly is a species of fly that can be found in New Jersey. This fly is generally found in gardens, fields, and meadows during the year’s warmer months. They are often seen hovering near flowers while they search for nectar and pollen.
The Bee Fly, on our list of the different types of flies in New Jersey, has a short proboscis that allows it to sip nectar from flowers. They have small, robust bodies and wings patterned with dark stripes and patches. The coloration varies from yellowish brown to black. They lay their eggs in the soil near the nests of bees, wasps, and ants, where the larvae feed on their hosts.
11. Atlantis Fritillary Butterfly
The Atlantis Fritillary is a species of butterfly found in New Jersey. It has a distinct orange and black pattern with large white spots on its wings. Its range extends from the Hudson River Valley down to the Atlantic Coast.
The Atlantis Fritillary is a medium-sized butterfly with a wingspan of approximately 2.5 inches. It is typically active during summer and can be found near woodlands and wet meadows. Equally important to note, it is one of the many types of flies in New Jersey.
This species prefers habitats with abundant nectar and host plants, such as thistles, violets, and goldenrods. Although the Atlantis Fritillary is not considered threatened, it is important to protect its habitat to ensure its continued survival.
12. Band-Winged Crane Fly
The Band-winged Crane Fly is found in the United States and Canada, especially in New Jersey. It is identifiable by its long and slender legs and wings, usually brown or yellowish with dark bands. This fly is most commonly seen near wetlands and around marshes, ponds, lakes, and gardens.
Additionally, they are types of flies in New Jersey that feed on nectar and other small insects and are important pollinators. In New Jersey, these flies are typically seen from May to August and are considered beneficial due to their role in pollinating local plants.
The Band-winged Crane Fly is also an important food source for many birds, mammals, amphibians, and reptiles. Some amphibians have been known to eat hundreds of them in one day.
This fly has been identified as a species of least concern by the International Union for Conservation of Nature due to its wide range and ability to adapt to various habitats. Its presence in New Jersey means that this species will continue to be a part of our ecosystem for years to come.
13. Black Horse Fly
The black horsefly is a large species native to New Jersey. It is characterized by its striking black color and long wings that are usually banded with yellow or white. These flies often buzz around fields, meadows, and other open spaces throughout the state.
The larvae of these flies feed on the blood of horses, cattle, and other large animals, making them essential pests for farmers and livestock owners. In addition to being pests, black horseflies are also essential pollinators in New Jersey. They can be found in woodlands, meadows, fields, and other natural habitats that help maintain biodiversity and promote healthy ecosystems.
14. Black Firefly
The Black Firefly is a small firefly found in New Jersey and other parts of the Eastern United States. They are usually seen in the summertime, and their black bodies and orange-yellow markings make them stand out in the night sky. These fireflies on our list of the numerous types of flies in New Jersey are quite active and can be seen flying around in swarms.
They are attracted to lights, and they can be found in areas where there is light pollution. The Black Firefly has a lifespan of about two months; during this time, they will mate, lay eggs, and feed on nectar and insects. They are an essential part of the local ecosystem, providing food for predators and pollinating plants.
15. Cabbage White Butterfly
The Cabbage White Butterfly (Pieris rapae) is a type of fly found in New Jersey. It is one of the types of flies in New Jersey and is a medium-sized butterfly with a wingspan of up to 2 inches. The wings are white or light yellow with black markings and have an overall checkered pattern.
The butterfly feeds on cabbage, broccoli, kale, and other leafy greens, which is why it is often referred to as the cabbage butterfly. Its larvae feed on the leaves of these same plants, which can make them destructive to vegetable gardens if there is an infestation. Cabbage White Butterflies can be seen throughout the summer in New Jersey, fluttering around flower patches and garden plots.
They are attracted to open areas and will migrate in large groups during certain parts of the year. The species is generally harmless and considered a pest only when its larvae become too numerous. Fortunately, they can easily be managed by planting late-flowering varieties of crops and removing affected plants. Proper management allows the Cabbage White Butterfly to be enjoyed in New Jersey gardens.
The caddisfly is a unique and exciting type of fly found in New Jersey. These small aquatic insects have segmented, hairy bodies and feed on plant material, algae, and other organisms in their aquatic environment. The caddisfly can be seen swimming around in freshwater habitats such as ponds, lakes, and streams, or even along the ocean’s shoreline.
They are an essential part of the food chain, providing food for fish and other aquatic animals. In some areas, they have also been considered a pest, as they may cause damage to plants or structures near water. The caddisfly is also a famous insect among entomologists and hobbyists due to its fascinating life cycle and wide range of colors and patterns.
17. Cimbicid Sawfly
The Cimbicid Sawfly, also known as Abia americana, is a species of sawfly that inhabits the east coast of the United States, including New Jersey. It is a medium-sized insect with a length of about 12-20 mm, black with yellowish to orange patches on its wings. Its larvae feed on grasses and other plants and can cause considerable damage in agricultural fields.
Adult Cimbicid Sawflies are primarily active during the day, often seen hovering near flowers or perching on leaves. They feed on flower nectar and can also be found near decaying material, dead animals, and excrement. In New Jersey, they are most commonly seen in gardens, meadows, and woodlands. They are also types of flies in New Jersey!
18. Common Stonefly
The Common Stonefly (Paragnetina media) is a stonefly found in many states, including New Jersey. This species of stonefly is known for its small size and dark coloration. It is usually found near bodies of water and prefers habitats with high amounts of moisture.
This stonefly species can be an essential food source for fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and other insects. They have a wide range of diets, including aquatic insects, algae, detritus, and other organic matter. The Common Stonefly has a life cycle of around two years and reproduces multiple times throughout their lives.
Common Stoneflies are often seen near rivers and streams during the summer months. During this time, they can be seen resting on vegetation near the water or flying above its surface. They are types of flies in New Jersey that can be found in many colors ranging from yellow to brown or black.
This stonefly species can also be found in smaller numbers in wetlands, ponds, and lakes. As with most stoneflies, Common Stoneflies are considered beneficial because of their role in the food web and their ability to help control mosquito populations.
19. Dogwood Sawfly
The Dogwood Sawfly (Macremphytus tarsatus) is an exciting fly in New Jersey. This species is characterized by its reddish-brown color and small size, measuring only 4 to 5 millimeters in length. Its larvae are particularly harmful to flowering dogwood trees, feeding on the foliage and causing extensive damage to the tree’s leaves and flowers.
To combat this, homeowners should inspect their dogwood trees for signs of sawfly activity and take preventive measures to reduce the risk of infestation. As with most other types of flies in New Jersey, Dogwood Sawflies can be managed through regular monitoring and the use of insecticides. Dogwood Sawflies typically have a short lifespan of around two weeks, during which time they can lay up to 60 eggs that will hatch into larvae.
These larvae feed on the leaves of their host plant and can cause extensive damage if left unchecked. To protect your dogwood trees from these pests, it’s essential to inspect them regularly and take action quickly if any sawfly activity is detected.
Pruning back-infested branches are also recommended to remove any sawfly eggs or larvae before they hatch and cause further damage. Preventive steps like these can help keep your trees safe from Dogwood Sawfly infestations.
20. Eastern Forktail Damselfly
The Eastern Forktail Damselfly (Ischnura verticalis) is found in New Jersey. This small insect can be identified by its reddish-brown head, thorax, and abdomen with greenish-blue eyes. The Eastern Forktail Damselfly has an exciting pattern of bands on its wings that form a forklike shape, giving it its common name.
Furthermore, it is usually found near ponds, lakes, and other wetland areas where it breeds and feeds on small flying insects. The Eastern Forktail Damselfly is an integral part of the New Jersey ecosystem as it helps to keep populations of pesky insects in check. Let’s proceed with this list of the different types of flies in New Jersey.
21. Eastern Phantom Crane Fly
The Eastern Phantom Crane Fly is a species of fly that is found in New Jersey. It is one of the larger flies in the state, with a length of up to 4 cm. The body of the Eastern Phantom Crane Fly is black, and its wings are transparent, creating a striking appearance. The fly feeds on plant nectar, fruit juices, and other insect larvae.
The Eastern Phantom Crane Fly can be seen hovering around shrubs, trees, and flowers during summer. They can also be found near streams, ponds, and marshlands, where they lay their eggs.
The larvae of this species are aquatic and feed on plant material and algae in the water. Adult Eastern Phantom Crane Flies are often attracted to light sources and can be seen congregating near bright lights at night.
22. Elm Sawfly
The Elm Sawfly (Cimbex americanus) is a type of fly found in New Jersey. It is a native species, and its larvae feed on the foliage of various elm trees. The adults are medium-sized and black, with white or yellow stripes on their wings.
They can be seen between late May and early September. The larvae are greenish-white with black spots and have brown heads. They can be found on the undersides of leaves where they feed, leaving a skeletonized or mottled pattern on the foliage.
This species is not considered a pest, as it does not cause significant damage to the elm trees it feeds on. They are not left out of this list of the types of flies in New Jersey!
23. European Drone Fly
The European Drone Fly is a type of fly found in New Jersey. It is medium to large, with yellow and black bands on its body. It has a wingspan of about 1 inch, and the larvae can reach up to 2 inches in length.
The European Drone Fly has a wide range of habitat requirements, from meadows, woodlands, and marshes to wetlands, grasslands, and agricultural areas. It is common throughout the eastern United States and Canada and can be found in every state in New Jersey.
The European Drone Fly feeds on nectar, honeydew, sap, and smaller insects like aphids and thrips. The larvae feed on decaying plant material. In some areas, this is one of the types of flies in New Jersey that is an essential pollinator for some crops.
24. Eyed Brown Butterfly
The Eyed Brown Butterfly (Lethe eurydice) is a butterfly found in the northern part of New Jersey. This butterfly is orange-brown and can be seen from late spring through early fall. It has a wingspan of about 2.5 inches, and its distinctive eyespots give it its name.
The Eyed Brown Butterfly typically feeds on nectar from flowers like lupines, vetches, thistles, and knapweeds. It also feeds on other vegetation, such as grasses and sedges. This butterfly species is an essential pollinator for many native plants, so it is vital to maintain habitats that can sustain these butterflies.
25. Giant Eastern Crane Fly
The Giant Eastern Crane Fly is a large, impressive insect found in the wetlands and woodlands of New Jersey. It has a wingspan of up to 5 cm, and its distinctive shape is immediately recognizable. It also has long, thin legs and an elongated body covered with long, black, and yellow stripes.
Its larvae are aquatic, living in both natural and artificial habitats, such as ditches, ponds, and rivers. In addition to providing food for fish and other aquatic organisms, these larvae also aerate the water and help to keep the ecosystem healthy. Adults of this species can be seen in mid-summer hovering over fields and other open areas, looking for mates.
Although they are types of flies in New Jersey that do not sting or bite, they can be quite persistent when disturbed. The Giant Eastern Crane Fly is an important part of New Jersey’s natural ecosystem, helping to keep the environment healthy and balanced.
26. Giant Mayfly
The Giant Mayfly (Hexagenia limbata) is an insect found in New Jersey and other parts of the United States. It is a large insect with a wingspan of 3 to 4 inches, and its body length can reach up to two inches. This species has a long life cycle, starting with eggs in the water that hatch into nymphs, which then develop into adult mayflies.
The adult mayflies live for only one to three days and are known for their impressive mating flights. The males fly in swarms, chase females, and form huge aggregations. Compared to other types of flies in New Jersey, this species is typically found near bodies of water such as rivers, lakes, and ponds.
27. Gold-Backed Snipe Fly
The Gold-backed Snipe Fly (Chrysopilus thoracicus) is a large, brightly colored fly on our list of the types of flies in New Jersey. It is one of the area’s more easily identified species of flies due to its bright orange and yellow body and black-and-white wings. This fly typically lives near wooded areas, where it feeds on nectar from flowers or the sap from tree stumps. It is also known to visit compost piles or animal waste to feed.
The Gold-backed Snipe Fly is usually seen during the summer months when it is most active. This fly is not considered a pest, but its presence may indicate that an area has an abundance of decaying plant material or a lack of proper sanitation. In either case, homeowners should take action to reduce the population of Gold-backed Snipe Flies in their area.
28. Gray Hairstreak Butterfly
The Gray Hairstreak Butterfly is a beautiful insect found in the New Jersey area. This small butterfly has a wingspan of only an inch and a half, making it one of the smallest butterflies in the state. It has grayish-brown upper wings and a grayish-white underside.
The middle of its wings has a thin, dark band that is made up of small black spots. This butterfly has a unique shape and is often mistaken for a moth due to its smaller size and rounded wings. This butterfly is active during summer and can be found in sunny, open areas such as meadows and fields.
They are also types of flies in New Jersey, and they feed on nectar from various flowers such as thistles, clovers, and milkweeds. Males spend most of their time searching for females to mate with. The larvae of the Gray Hairstreak Butterfly feed on plant leaves, including elm and willow trees. When fully grown, these caterpillars spin silk cocoons, where they will remain until they emerge as adult butterflies.
29. Great Spangled Fritillary
The Great Spangled Fritillary is a type of butterfly found throughout New Jersey. It is a member of the Nymphalidae family and is characterized by its bright orange and black patterned wings with silver spots. The adult males are larger than the females, and both have wingspans between three and five inches.
They are also included in our list of the different types of flies in New Jersey, and the larvae are brownish and fuzzy in appearance. They feed on plants such as violets, clover, and thistles. The adults will sip nectar from flowers and are active during the day. They are essential pollinators for many wildflowers and crops.
30. Lake Darner Dragonfly
The Lake Darner Dragonfly is a type of dragonfly native to New Jersey. It is the largest and most common species of dragonfly found in the state. This dragonfly species can be found in freshwater habitats, including lakes, ponds, and marshes.
Moving on, it is a large dragonfly with a length of up to two inches and has a black and yellow body with blue eyes. It has a fast flying ability and is often seen feeding on small insects such as mosquitoes, flies, and other aquatic invertebrates. The Lake Darner Dragonfly is an essential predator in New Jersey’s aquatic ecosystems and plays an important role in controlling insect populations.
31. Leaf Miner Fly
Leaf Miner Fly is a family of flies found in New Jersey. These flies are small, dark-colored insects ranging in size from 2 to 4 millimeters in length. They typically feed on the leaves of various grass, shrubs, and trees.
Leaf Miner Flies, also types of flies in New Jersey, have an adult and larval stage. The adult flies lay their eggs on the leaf surface of their preferred host plant, and the larvae feed on the tissue between the upper and lower surfaces of the leaf.
The adult fly then emerges from the leaf to continue its life cycle. Leaf Miner Flies can cause serious damage to crops, trees, and shrubs, but they are also beneficial predators that can help control populations of other pests.
32. Long-Legged Fly
Long-legged Flies are a family of small, slender flies that are found throughout the world. These flies are found in New Jersey and can be seen during the year’s warmer months. They typically have long legs and colorful bodies with yellow or orange markings.
As with other types of flies in New Jersey, long-legged Flies feed on plant nectar and are considered beneficial pollinators. These flies may also feed on smaller insects and can be seen hovering around flowers and other areas where their food sources are available. Long-legged Flies are essential for maintaining biodiversity in the ecosystem.
33. March Brown Mayfly
The March Brown Mayfly (Maccaffertium vicarium) is a mayfly found in New Jersey. This species is one of the most abundant and widely distributed mayflies in North America. It is a medium-sized insect, typically measuring about 7 millimeters in length.
The adult has two pairs of wings, with the hind wings being more significant than the front pair, and the body is generally brown with distinctive markings. This mayfly species emerges from rivers and streams in mid-to-late spring, often forming large mating swarms.
The adults live for only a few days and mate and lay eggs before dying. The eggs sink to the bottom of the water and hatch into larvae, which live and feed in the mud until they are ready to emerge as adults.
This species is an important food source for fish and other aquatic organisms, making them an essential part of the freshwater ecosystem. We are gradually approaching the end of this list of the types of flies in New Jersey!
34. Meadow Fritillary Butterfly
The Meadow Fritillary Butterfly (Boloria bellona) is a type of fly found in New Jersey. It is a small, bright orange and black butterfly found in meadows, fields, and other open areas. This species is fairly common in New Jersey and is often seen flying close to the ground or resting on leaves or flowers.
The Meadow Fritillary’s wings are decorated with white, checkered borders, and its hindwing is marked with spots of silvery blue. This species feeds on various nectar sources, including wildflowers and garden plants. They are active during the day and can be seen fluttering around from mid-April to early October. We’ll end this list of the various types of flies in New Jersey here!
We have come to the end of this list of the different types of flies in New Jersey that you might encounter! As stated earlier, many insects, in this case, flies, call the state home.
We discussed the various types of flies in New Jersey, their characteristics, behaviors, and their environment.
We hope you’ve learned one or two things from this comprehensive guide. Till later!