43 Different Types of Flies in Oregon

Different Types of Flies in Oregon
Photo by Surya Prakash

Oregon is home to a diverse range of fly species, some of which can be beneficial while others can cause major damage to crops, livestock, and even humans.

In this blog post, we’ll look at the different types of flies in Oregon, how they can affect you, and how you can protect yourself and your property. 

From houseflies and blowflies to fruit flies and crane flies, understanding the various fly species in Oregon is the first step in keeping them away.

Read on to learn more about the different types of flies in Oregon and how they can affect you.

1. Hover Fly

The Hover Fly is one of the most common types of flies in Oregon. These small flies, also known as Syrphidae, are usually black and yellow and have long antennae.

They are beneficial for the environment as they help control insect pests like aphids. 

These flies have swift flight and can hover or move in any direction. They typically feed on nectar or small insects and can be seen near gardens, meadows, and fields.

The Hover Fly is an important part of the natural ecosystem and should be protected.

2. Horse Fly

Horse flies, also known as tabanids, are found throughout the state of Oregon and can be found in both rural and urban areas.

They have dark bodies and striped wings and are quite large compared to other types of flies.

Horse flies are known for their painful and irritating bite, which can cause redness, swelling, and irritation. 

These flies usually feed on the blood of animals and humans, although they also feed on nectar from flowers.

While horseflies are unpleasant, they are an important part of the food chain, providing food for many other insects and predators.

They are second on our list of the various types of flies in Oregon.

3. House Fly

House flies, or Musca domestica, are one of the most commonly found flies in Oregon. They are small and typically brown with dark stripes running lengthwise on their thorax and abdomen.

These flies feed on decaying organic matter, such as feces and garbage, which can lead to the transmission of diseases.

They can also be attracted to human food sources like meat and dairy products. It is important to keep outdoor areas clean and clear of standing water and decaying materials to help reduce the presence of house flies in Oregon.

4. Hornet Mimic Hover Fly

The Hornet Mimic Hover Fly is native to Oregon and the surrounding region. It is easily recognizable due to its unique black and yellow coloring, reminiscent of a wasp or hornet.

This fly is found in various habitats, including forests, meadows, and grasslands. 

They typically fly close to the ground, hovering around plants and flowers in search of nectar.

Hornet Mimic Hover Flies can often be seen on sunny days flying in swarms of up to 50 individuals.

While they do not pose any danger to humans, they benefit gardens and crops as they are efficient pollinators.

5. Hangingfly

Hangingflies are one of the most common flies found in Oregon. They get their name from their distinct habit of hanging from plants, walls, or other surfaces.

They are known for their long, thin wings and small size, measuring 7 millimeters long. 

These types of flies in Oregon can be found anywhere from wet meadows to gardens and woodlands.

The larvae of this species feed on insects like aphids and other small invertebrates, making them important predators in the ecosystem. 

They can also be seen hovering near flowers, looking for nectar and other sweet-tasting food sources.

Hangingflies are an important part of Oregon’s natural ecology and should be respected and left undisturbed if encountered.

6. Green Mantisfly

The green mantisfly is a fly found in Oregon and is closely related to the praying mantis. It is often mistaken for a large mosquito due to its size and flight pattern.

The green mantisfly is beneficial as it feeds on plant-eating pests such as aphids, caterpillars, and spider mites. 

Though it may appear intimidating due to its size and winged body, the green mantisfly poses no threat to humans or animals.

It is one of the types of flies in Oregon that does not bite or sting and is harmless to people and pets.

As a result, it is considered a beneficial insect for gardeners, farmers, and other outdoors enthusiasts.

7. Green and Black Soldier Fly

The Green and Black Soldier Fly is an unusual type found in the state of Oregon.

They are considered an important species in terms of pest control, as they are predators that feed on other insects such as aphids, mites, and flies.

These large flies have a unique pattern of green and black markings on their wings. 

They are also types of flies in Oregon that can be found near bodies of water, especially ponds and streams.

As they are attracted to light, they can be found around bright outdoor lights at night.

It is important to remember that these flies pose no threat to humans and can be beneficial for controlling pests in your yard or garden.

8. Gray Hairstreak Butterfly

The Gray Hairstreak butterfly is found throughout Oregon and is commonly seen in summer. It has a gray, white, and orange coloration, with a wingspan of about one to two inches.

The larvae feed on various plants in the area, and when the adult emerges, it is often seen hovering near flowers and other nectar sources. 

While it does not bite or sting, it is still considered a nuisance as it can get into homes and buildings, especially if food sources are inside.

Fortunately, they do not reproduce in large numbers, so control measures are usually easy to manage. All in all, it is not left out of this list of different types of flies in Oregon.

9. Giant Stonefly

Giant stoneflies (Pteronarcys species) are one of the many types of flies in Oregon. They can be distinguished by their large size, dull yellow-brown color, and angular heads.

These insects are typically active during late spring and early summer and are often found near streams and rivers. 

The larvae of this species are generally found in the bottoms of streams and rivers, while adults will feed on decaying vegetation, fungi, and other organic material.

The presence of a Giant Stonefly can indicate that a waterway is healthy, as they are susceptible to water pollution and will move away from polluted areas.

We are just getting started with this list of the various types of flies in Oregon.

10. Four-Spotted Mantidfly

The four-spotted mantidfly is an often overlooked insect found in Oregon. These insects belong to the order Mecoptera and are in the family Mantispidae.

They are found in wet and moist areas such as wetlands, marshes, and other moist habitats. 

They are small, about 5 mm in length, and have two pairs of wings and four spots on their bodies. They feed on small insects such as flies, midges, mosquitoes, and mayflies. 

In addition to feeding on small insects, they also eat the nectar of flowers. These flies are beneficial insects to humans as they help to control the populations of many nuisance species.

11. Forktail Damselflies

Forktail Damselflies are small, delicate, and colorful insects found in Oregon. These insects have a characteristic forked tail and can be found near water or on flowers. 

They are predaceous, feeding on smaller invertebrates such as mosquitos and flies.

Although they do not sting or bite, these damselflies are still an important part of Oregon’s ecosystem by helping to control the population of pest insects.

12. Flower Fly

The Flower Fly (Toxomerus politus) is a small fly found in Oregon that is usually found on flowers.

The adults are usually around 5-8mm long and have a black and yellow banded pattern. These flies feed on nectar and pollen from the flowers they visit and act as pollinators. 

They can be easily identified by their distinct yellow antennae and long proboscis, which they use to feed on the nectar of flowers.

The larvae of Flower Flies can feed on aphids and are sometimes used as biological control agents for these pests. If you are seeking more types of flies in Oregon, continue reading!

13. Flesh Fly

Flesh flies are commonly found in Oregon and throughout the United States. These large flies are easily recognizable by their reddish-brown to black bodies and distinctive yellow stripes running down their abdomen.

Flesh flies are primarily scavengers and feed on decaying animal carcasses and feces. 

They are types of flies in Oregon and can also be found around garbage, road kill, and other organic matter.

Although their primary purpose is to help decompose organic matter, they can become a nuisance in homes and gardens if their numbers become too large.

To control flesh fly populations, it is important to remove decaying matter from around the home and to keep outdoor trash containers tightly covered.

14. Firefly

Oregon is home to a variety of fly species, including fireflies. Fireflies, known as lightning bugs, are nocturnal insects with luminescent bodies. They belong to the beetle family Lampyridae and the Photuris genus. 

These insects live in a wide range of habitats across Oregon, but they are most commonly found in open meadows, fields, and woodlands.

The firefly produces a bright yellow-green light in its abdomen when threatened or trying to attract mates. 

This phenomenon, called bioluminescence, helps the firefly find food and ward off predators.

In addition, the light helps these insects communicate with one another by blinking light patterns.

Above all, fireflies are types of flies in Oregon that are quite common.

15. Fishfly

Fishflies are an important part of the local ecosystem and can be found throughout Oregon.

These flies have distinctive black and yellow wings, commonly seen along rivers, lakes, and ponds. Fishflies feed on aquatic plants, small insects, and other organic matter. 

They are also known to lay their eggs on rocks, logs, and vegetation near bodies of water.

This fly is an important food source for fish and other aquatic organisms, helping to ensure healthy ecosystems in Oregon.

16. Filter Fly

Filter flies are types of flies in Oregon that are medium-sized and have distinctive black and white coloration.

They feed on organic matter, such as dead insects, decaying fruits, fungi, and animal droppings. 

These flies are often found around lakes and ponds, laying eggs near the shoreline. Filter flies benefit humans as they help control insect populations in the area.

Additionally, they are a major food source for fish, birds, and other regional predators.

17. Field Crescent Butterfly

The Field Crescent Butterfly is a small butterfly native to Oregon and can be found in the region’s meadows, fields, and woodlands.

It has a brownish body with white and yellow markings, and its wings are orange-yellow. 

The Field Crescent Butterfly is known to be active during the day, although it is most often seen flitting around in the late afternoon.

It is a favorite of gardeners as it helps to pollinate flowers. It is also an important part of the ecosystem, helping to keep pest insects at bay.

18. Feather-Legged Fly

The Feather-legged Fly, or Trichopoda pennipes, is a fly species found in Oregon. This type of fly has a unique appearance, with legs covered in long and feathery setae.

They are types of flies in Oregon that are typically black with yellow patches on their bodies. 

They feed on pollen and nectar from flowers and plants, which helps pollinate the local environment.

These flies can be beneficial to gardeners and farmers, as they help to spread pollen and aid in the growth of plants.

They are most active during summer and can be found around flower beds, gardens, and fields.

19. European Drone Fly

The European Drone Fly (Eristalis arbustorum) is a fly species found in Oregon. This species is a part of the hoverfly family and is characterized by its slender body and orange-brown color.

The European Drone Fly can be distinguished from other species of flies in Oregon because it has larger eyes with more intricate markings. 

It also has two dark stripes running down its back and a yellow head. This fly is an important pollinator for many flowers in Oregon and is usually seen buzzing around gardens and meadows during the summer months. 

The larvae of this species can be found in damp soils and decaying plant matter. They are also commonly used in biocontrol methods as they feed on various harmful insect pests.

20. Elm Sawfly

This sawfly species are commonly found in the Pacific Northwest and in the states of Oregon, Washington, and California.

The Elm Sawfly feeds on elm trees and prefers to be found near elm trees and shrubs. It has a dark gray body with reddish-brown legs, wings, and antennae.

Its wings are marked with light gray stripes, and its eyes are yellow-green. 

This sawfly is known to be destructive to elm trees as it can cause significant damage if left unchecked.

It is important for homeowners and gardeners to monitor their elm trees for any sign of sawfly infestation and to take action to eliminate them from the area as soon as possible.

21. Dobsonfly

The Dobsonfly is an iconic insect found in Oregon, and its intimidating size and appearance have made it a widely recognizable species.

It has a wingspan of about 4 inches, and males have large pincer-like mandibles which can be used to defend themselves against predators.

Its coloring is a mottled grayish brown, and it can be found near ponds, streams, and rivers. 

The Dobsonfly is an important predator in aquatic ecosystems as it feeds on mayfly larvae, mosquitos, and other small insects.

It is also beneficial to humans because it helps to keep mosquito populations under control. We aren’t done yet with this list of the types of flies in Oregon 

22. Crane Flies

There are various types of flies in Oregon, and Crane flies are one of them. These are large, slender, delicate-looking insects with long legs and wings that resemble those of a crane.

They are found in many habitats throughout Oregon, including grassy fields, forests, deserts, and wetlands. 

While they are not considered nuisance insects, they can be found in high numbers in some areas.

Crane flies feed on decaying plant material and small insects, making them important decomposers in their environments.

It is also thought that they help control populations of other insect pests. 

Although harmless to humans, it is best to take precautionary steps to reduce the number of crane flies in your backyard or garden.

This can include using natural methods such as maintaining healthy soil and providing a habitat for predatory insects like spiders.

23. Compton Tortoiseshell Butterfly

The Compton Tortoiseshell Butterfly (Nymphalis l-album) is a butterfly found in Oregon. It is one of the most attractive butterflies in Oregon, with its bright yellow and black patterned wings.

Its wingspan is approximately three inches long, making it an impressive sight for anyone lucky enough to spot one. 

This butterfly species is found in moist forests and meadows, along rivers, streams, and lakeshores.

They prefer to nectar on various flowers, including wild violets and lupines. This species is very hardy and can survive in various climates.

The Compton Tortoiseshell butterfly is an important part of Oregon’s rich ecosystem and provides a beautiful backdrop to the state’s natural beauty.

24. Common Sawfly

A common sawfly is a group of several species of sawflies found in Oregon. These small flies are related to bees, wasps, and ants, but they have different characteristics that distinguish them from these other insects.

Sawflies are identified by their serrated edges on the wings and usually one pair of black spots near the tip of the wings. 

Common sawflies feed on the leaves and stems of flowers, grasses, and shrubs. While most species feed on plant material, some also consume small insects or spiders. 

The most common sawfly species in Oregon are the European pine sawfly, the western conifer seed bug, and the western white pine sawfly.

These pests, on the list of the different types of flies in Oregon, can cause serious damage to plants and should be controlled if found in large numbers.

25. Cloudless Sulphur Butterfly

Despite their annoying presence, horse flies, one of the numerous types of flies in Oregon, can actually be helpful to humans.

They provide food for several species of birds, such as swallows and house finches, that feed on these large insects. 

In addition, horseflies pollinate flowers and help disperse nutrients throughout the ecosystem.

Therefore, it is important to understand horse flies’ important role in the environment before attempting to eliminate them.

26. Cimbicid Sawfly

Cimbicid Sawfly is one of the most commonly seen types of flies in Oregon. This fly is widely distributed throughout the state, with reports of its presence in all parts of the region.

They are attracted to gardens and wooded areas and often inhabit compost piles and decaying vegetation. 

This species of sawfly is black with white markings on its wings. The larvae feed on various plants, such as grasses and wildflowers, as well as shrubs and trees.

Adults are harmless, but their larvae can cause damage to certain plants if left unchecked. By controlling their population, you can help protect your garden from damage caused by Cimbicid Sawflies.

27. Caddisfly

Of the several types of flies in Oregon, Caddisflies are a type of aquatic insect found in Oregon‘s rivers and streams.

They belong to the order Trichoptera and can range in size from just a few millimeters to several centimeters in length.

The larvae of caddisflies typically build cases out of twigs, leaves, and other debris as they develop underwater. 

These cases may be either permanent or temporary, depending on the species. Caddisfly adults are mostly nocturnal and rarely seen during the day.

They are an important part of the aquatic ecosystem, providing food for fish, frogs, and other organisms.

In addition, the presence of caddisflies in a waterway often indicates good water quality.

28. Cabbage White Butterfly

The Cabbage White Butterfly (Pieris rapae) is one of the most common and easily recognizable butterflies in Oregon.

These beautiful white butterflies, with their distinctive black tips on their wings, can be seen fluttering around in gardens and meadows from spring to fall.

The caterpillars feed on various plants, including cabbage, kale, broccoli, and cauliflower. 

As the adult butterfly feeds, it plays an important role in pollinating these and other plants.

The larvae of the Cabbage White Butterfly, one of the various types of flies in Oregon, can cause significant damage to vegetable crops. As a result, farmers need to control this species to protect their crops.

29. Blue Blow Fly

The Blue Blow Fly (Calliphora vincina) is an insect found in the Pacific Northwest, including the state of Oregon.

These flies are a part of the Calliphoridae family of Diptera, and are easily identifiable due to their bright blue color.

They are most active during summer and can often be seen in parks and gardens. 

They lay their eggs in decaying organic matter, such as animal carcasses or vegetation, which will then hatch into larvae.

The larvae feed on the decomposing matter and eventually pupate before emerging as adult flies.

The Blue Blow Fly is an important part of the natural cycle in Oregon and provides an important food source for birds and other predators.

30. Black-Tailed Bee Fly

The Black-tailed Bee Fly (Bombylius major) is a bee fly found in the Pacific Northwest, including Oregon.

These flies are small, growing to around 8–10 mm long, and mostly grey with a black tail and wings.

They are most commonly seen flying in the mid-summer months, visiting flowers to drink nectar. 

As their name implies, they resemble bees in their behavior, although, unlike bees, they are not stingers.

The Black-tailed Bee Fly is considered an important pollinator in the region, and their presence benefits gardens and farms. In all, it is one of the types of flies in Oregon.

31. Black-Horned Gem Fly

The Black-horned Gem Fly is also one of the more common types of flies in Oregon. It is a small, metallic fly that measures only 5 to 6 mm in size and has two thin, black horns.

These small flies are commonly found near deciduous trees and shrubs and can be identified by their metallic green bodies and shiny wings. 

The Black-horned Gem Fly feeds on plant nectar and pollen, but they also feed on insects.

In Oregon, they are mostly seen in the summer months, but they can also be found during other times of the year.

Although these flies are not considered a nuisance, they can become a nuisance if they become too numerous.

32. Black Soldier Fly

The Black Soldier Fly (Hermetia illucens) is a type of fly found in Oregon. It is commonly found near decaying organic matter and decaying vegetation, such as compost piles, manure piles, and other areas where organic material has started to decompose.

Black soldier flies can range in size from one-eighth inch to a quarter of an inch long and are usually black, although some specimens may have a reddish hue.

These flies are important decomposers, helping to break down dead material and return nutrients to the soil. They also serve as food for animals, birds, and other insects.

Additionally, they help control populations of other pests by consuming their larvae.

33. Black Blow Fly

The Black Blow Fly (Phormia regina) is a common species of fly found in Oregon. This species is characterized by its robust body, black and yellowish coloration, and large eyes.

The black blow fly is commonly found around garbage, decaying organic matter, and dung. 

The larvae of the black blow fly feed on decaying material and can be beneficial in breaking down this material.

Adult black blowflies are often seen around flowers and other places that offer nectar for their sustenance. 

These flies are considered beneficial for their role in pollinating plants, although they can also be a nuisance if present in large numbers in areas near humans.

There are still more types of flies in Oregon you didn’t know about. Continue reading to find them out!

34. Bee-Like Tachinid Fly

The bee-like tachinid fly, Hystricia abrupta, is one of Oregon’s interesting types of flies. This fly looks like a bee due to its yellow and black coloration and overall size.

However, unlike bees, this flight does not sting. This species is also known as the yellow-striped drone fly or the solitary tachinid fly. 

They are typically found in wooded areas and near lakes or ponds. They feed on nectar, pollen, and decaying plant matter and act as pollinators. 

In addition, they help control populations of other insects, such as caterpillars and moths, by laying their eggs on them.

The presence of the bee-like tachinid fly in Oregon is beneficial for both nature and humans.

35. Bee-Like Robber Fly

The Bee-like Robber Fly (Laphria canis complex) is a fly found in Oregon. This fly has a characteristic black and yellow striped body, black eyes, and long legs.

These flies feed on other insects, such as aphids, caterpillars, and beetles, and can be found resting on flowers or shrubs near their prey. 

They are types of flies in Oregon also known to feed on small mammals and reptiles. The presence of these flies can be beneficial for gardeners as they help to reduce pest populations.

However, they can also be a nuisance if they become too numerous, especially if they enter homes and other buildings.

36. Bee Fly

Bee Fly (Poecilognathus spp.) is a type of fly found in Oregon and other parts of the US.

They can be identified by their long, slender bodies, dark-colored wings, and tendency to hover near flowers or other nectar sources. 

These flies usually lay eggs on leaves near the ground, and the larvae feed on soil organisms or decaying plant matter.

Bee flies are important pollinators and predators of other insects, making them beneficial to have around. They are harmless to humans and rarely cause any problems.

37. American Salmonfly

The American salmonfly is a large fly found in Oregon and other parts of the Northwest United States.

The adult flies are typically brown or olive and range from 1.5-2.5 inches in length. They are attracted to streams, rivers, and lakes, where they can lay eggs on aquatic vegetation. 

The larvae feed on various aquatic insects and can be a major pest to fisheries.

Fishermen also value these species as a food source and use them as bait when fishing for salmon, trout, and other fish species.

This list of the different types of flies in Oregon is not complete without the American salmonfly.

38. American Rubyspot Damselfly

The American Rubyspot damselfly is a beautiful insect commonly found in Oregon. It has bright red eyes, and its body is metallic blue with yellow patches on the wings.

This species of the damselfly is usually seen in small groups near freshwater streams or ponds, where they can be seen perching on rocks or vegetation during the day. 

They feed on small aquatic invertebrates such as mosquitoes, midges, and mayflies.

The American Rubyspot Damselfly is important for maintaining the ecological balance in Oregon’s waterways and helps control some pests’ populations.

39. American Lady Butterfly

Compared to other types of flies in Oregon, the American Lady Butterfly is one of the most commonly seen.

It is found throughout the state and can be seen fluttering around gardens and meadows from late spring through early autumn.

This species is orange-brown with pale yellow and white markings on the upper wings and a black border along the lower wings. 

The undersides of the wings have a light cream color with a dark brown edge. They feed on nectar from flowers and congregate around flowering plants.

These delicate creatures are an important part of Oregon’s ecosystem, pollinating various plants and providing food for other insects.

40. Woodrat Bot Fly

The woodrat bot fly is found in Oregon and across the United States. It can be recognized by its reddish-brown coloring and yellow spots on its abdomen.

The larvae of this species are parasitic, feeding on small rodents such as the wood rat

Woodrat bot flies are not particularly dangerous to humans, although they may cause mild skin irritation when they land on us.

They are an important part of Oregon’s ecology as they help control the rodent population.

41. Winter Stonefly

Winter Stoneflies, found in the state of Oregon, are a group of several different species of stoneflies.

They are most often seen in cold weather during winter months and are known for their hardiness and ability to survive extreme temperatures. 

Winter stoneflies can be found in streams, rivers, and ponds throughout Oregon. These insects feed mainly on algae and other small aquatic organisms but eat aquatic plant material if needed.

Their presence can indicate good water quality and clarity, as they prefer clean, well-oxygenated water.

42. Whitefly

As we approach the end of this list of the various types of flies in Oregon, we have the Whiteflies. These are one of the most common flying insects found in the state.

These tiny flies feed on plant sap and can become a nuisance for home gardeners as they spread plant diseases and damage foliage. 

Several whiteflies are found in Oregon, including the citrus whitefly, sweet potato whitefly, greenhouse whitefly, and Silverleaf whitefly.

The best way to prevent a whitefly infestation is to avoid purchasing plants that are already infested and to practice proper sanitation and pest control measures.

43. White Admiral Butterfly

The White Admiral Butterfly (Limenitis arthemis) is a nymphalid butterfly native to the western United States and parts of Canada.

They are large butterflies with a wingspan of up to 4 inches and have a distinctive white band running along the top of their wings.

They feed primarily on nectar from flowers and can often be seen flitting around gardens and parks. 

White Admirals are an important pollinator for many plants in Oregon, and their presence can signify a healthy ecosystem.

While they are not considered a nuisance species, they can become a nuisance if they become too numerous and start eating the leaves of trees or other plants. 

Fortunately, White Admiral Butterflies are relatively rare, and their populations remain relatively stable in Oregon.

These end our list of the different types of flies in Oregon that you should know about.


Oregon is known for its beautiful landscapes, diverse wildlife, and temperate climate. These all create the perfect habitat for various insects, including flies.

From the annoying fruit fly to the pesky house fly, there are many different types of flies in Oregon. 

We looked at the various types of flies in Oregon and how they affect you. We also looked at ways to manage and prevent them from becoming a nuisance. Till later!

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