• WordNet 3.6
    • n housefly common fly that frequents human habitations and spreads many diseases
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
  • Interesting fact: During its entire life time a housefly never travels more than a hundred feet from the place where it was born.
    • n housefly The common fly, Musca domestica. It is a dipterous or two-winged insect, of the family Muscidœ and the order Diptera, of the suborder Brachycera (having short feelers or antennæ), and of the subdivision Dichœtœ (having the sucker or proboscis composed of only two pieces). It is a good representative of the large family Muscidœ, and indeed of the whole order Diptera. It is found in nearly all parts of the world. It lays its eggs in bunches or clusters in almost any kind of decaying animal or vegetable matter, as carrion, manure, and other filth, and the maggots hatch in a day or less, according to the degree of heat (of decomposition to which they are subjected. The larvæ are small, headless, legless maggots, which attain their full size in about two weeks, and then crawl into some dry place to pupate. This process occupies a week or two, and on its completion the perfect fly emerges from the pupa. The house-fly is furnished with a suctorial proboscis, from which, when feeding on any dry substance, it exudes a liquid; this, by moistening the food, fits it to be sucked. Its feet are beset with hairs, each terminating in a disk which is supposed to act as a sucker, enabling it to walk on smooth surfaces, even with its back down, as on a ceiling. These disks are supposed to exude a liquid, making the adhesion more perfect. See also cut of compound eye, under eye.
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  • George Jean Nathan
    “An optimist is a fellow who believes a housefly is looking for a way to get out.”


In literature:

Housefly, dangerous, IV, 645.
"The Eugenic Marriage, Volume I. (of IV.)" by W. Grant Hague, M.D.
Creepy animals are only too plentiful, the most objectionable at present is the common housefly which is a perfect plague.
"The Incomparable 29th and the "River Clyde"" by George Davidson
Note more than one hundred houseflies in the sleeping stage.
"Health Lessons" by Alvin Davison
The housefly in its relation to public health.
"Handbook of Medical Entomology" by William Albert Riley
Boys, girls, men, and women, both married and unmarried, were as promiscuous by night as houseflies are by day.
"The Brothers' War" by John Calvin Reed
They had more than once noticed some very small bees, hardly larger than houseflies, flitting among the flowers.
"The Girl Crusoes" by Mrs. Herbert Strang
It has been discovered recently that germs of infantile paralysis are conveyed by the housefly.
"Great Hike" by Alan Douglas
An inch-objective will show the head of an housefly, which in a bright light is a very beautiful object.
"Through a Microscope" by Samuel Wells
This Titanic war reduces me to the size and importance of a debilitated housefly.
"The Journal of a Disappointed Man" by Wilhelm Nero Pilate Barbellion

In news:

The housefly is a fairly innocuous creature.
Housefly-sized surveillance craft, shape-changing 'chemical robots,' and tracking agents sprayed from the sky.
Houseflies do not sting of course, but their presence can actually be worse than that of wasps or bees.
This mess will lure houseflies and wasps .