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Flies

SCIENCE
July 30, 2005 | Rosie Mestel, Times Staff Writer
The mating of flies that lay maggots on blueberries with flies whose maggots prefer snowberries has created an evolutionary oddity: an emerging fly species whose maggots eat only honeysuckle. The discovery, published online Thursday in the journal Nature, was made by scientists at Pennsylvania State University working in the lab of entomologist Bruce McPheron.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 22, 1989 | TYLER CHIN, Times Staff Writer
Two male Mexican fruit flies have been captured within the past month in Santa Ana, and the state has launched a search, state officials said Friday. A door-to-door hunt began Friday in the neighborhoods around Bishop Street and Lingan Lane, where the flies were spotted in traps, Gera Curry, spokeswoman for the state Department of Food and Agriculture, said Friday. The second fly was found Thursday ; the first was found March 22 about 2 miles away. A fruit fly infestation could devastate California fruit crops and cause losses of more than $100 million, Curry said.
NEWS
July 22, 1988 | MICHAEL A. HILTZIK, Times Staff Writer
In Lucas Oyango's village, they needed to refer only to "the disease." For sleeping sickness was familiar to almost every family. Periodically, it turned the villagers into nomads, forcing them across the border into Tanzania. "They were driven away because of the flies," Oyango said. Years later, one family returned with 10 head of cattle to hitch to their two plows. Before the crops could even be planted, the disease had killed all the animals.
HEALTH
August 13, 2001 | Hartford Courant
As unappetizing as it sounds, fly saliva may turn out to be a cure for a potentially deadly parasitic infection. Federal researchers announced this week that they had prevented mice from developing leishmaniasis, a parasitic disease that can cause flesh-eating infections or fatal infestations of internal organs, by inoculating mice with a component derived from the saliva of a sand fly.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 1, 2009 | Shelby Grad
The potentially destructive white-striped fruit fly has been discovered in the eastern San Gabriel Valley, prompting the state to begin an eradication effort today. It's the first time this variety of fruit fly has been found in the Western Hemisphere, state officials said. Seven of the flies have been trapped in the La Verne area, and thousands of traps are going to be placed there in hopes of eradicating the insects. "The fly is native to tropical Southeast Asia, where it damages the fruit of many trees, most notably guava and mango," according to the state Department of Food and Agriculture.
NEWS
June 12, 1998 | THOMAS H. MAUGH II, TIMES MEDICAL WRITER
Fruit flies that are literally falling-down drunk may provide the first insight into why some humans are able to hold their liquor better than others, San Francisco researchers report today. The flies have a genetic defect, dubbed "cheapdate" by the scientists, that causes them to display all the characteristics of human drunkenness: hyperactivity, loss of coordination, disorientation and, ultimately, unconsciousness.
NEWS
June 15, 1998 | DAVID G. SAVAGE, TIMES STAFF WRITER
The Delhi Sands Flower-Loving Fly, which spends nearly all of its short life buried under a few sand dunes in San Bernardino County, may emerge this week as the snail darter of the 1990s. The once obscure and now federally protected fly is at the center of a major legal battle over the reach of federal environmental laws.
NEWS
January 4, 1996 | MICHAEL MILSTEIN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Buzzing flies might be unwelcome at most outdoor gatherings, but David Foote does all he can to attract them. His invitation is a pink sponge tacked to a tree, soaked with a broth of rotting mushrooms and smeared with spoiled, mashed-up bananas. "It's only been a few minutes and they're already coming in," said Foote, a National Biological Service entomologist, as he recently inspected a lure on a soapberry tree. One, two, three and more flies soon appeared in dark clusters on the sponge.
SCIENCE
August 30, 2008 | Thomas H. Maugh II, Times Staff Writer
Ever wonder why it is so hard to swat flies? It's because they don't just fly away from impending doom. They first jump in a direction that takes them away from the swatter, said Caltech bioengineer Michael Dickinson. The neurochemistry of the fruit fly's jump response has been thoroughly studied. So-called giant neurons in the insect's brain, the biggest in the fly, sense the shadow of an approaching object and fire, propelling the fly into flight. Researchers had thought that was all there was to it. But Dickinson and graduate student Gwyneth Card took high-speed digital movies of fruit flies as a black disk dropped toward them.
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