Black fly pupae

Black fly pupae

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Credit: SINCLAIR STAMMERS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Black fly pupae underwater. Black flies (Simulium damnosum) are small flies that spread the disease river blindness. Black flies reproduce by laying eggs in the waters of fast-flowing rivers, hence the common name for the disease. Each egg hatches out a larva that eventually forms a pupa. The winged adult fly will emerge from each pupa, make its way to the surface and fly off, emerging 8-12 days after the eggs are laid. The adult fly spreads the microscopic filarial stage of the parasitic worm that causes river blindness. The adult worm lives in humans, producing the microfilariae that blind people. This fly is found in Western Africa. Photographed in Ghana.

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Keywords: africa, african, animal, aquatic, black, condition, disease, disorder, filariasis, fly, ghana, ghanian, gnat, healthcare, insect, insecta, invertebrate, invertebrates, larva, larvae, life cycle, medical, medicine, nature, onchocerciasis, pupa, pupae, pupating, reproducing, reproduction, reproductive, river blindness, simulium damnosum, transmission, underwater, vector, water, wildlife, zoology

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