Section Diptera

Research projects at the Diptera Section

(as of february 2018)

M. Kotrba:


  • Phylogeny and systematics of Diptera, especially acalyptrate Schizophora.
  • Comparative anatomy, micromorphology and function of the internal female genital organs in Diptera, especially Schizophora (sperm transfer and storage, egg fertilization, sperm competition, cryptic female choice, vivipary).
  • Occurrence and Evolution of the ventral receptacle in the acalytrate Schizophora
  • Coevolution of male and female genitalia in Diptera
  • Giant spermatozoa
  • Phylogeny and life history of stalk-eyed flies (Diopsidae).
  • Problems of scientific wet collections.


  • Setting the records straight: The ventral receptacle and the spermathecae of Piophila casei (Diptera: Piophilidae)
  • Morphology and ultrastructure of the spermatozoa of Lonchopteridae. Project in cooperation with M. Tröster. – The internal male and female reproductive tract and particularly the giant spermatozoa of Lonchopteridae are studied using light microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, and confocal laser microscopy.
  • Comparative morphology and phylogenetic analysis of the internal female reproductive tract of Aulacigastridae. Project in cooperation with A. Rung. – The internal female reproductive organs of Aulacigastridae are dissected from fresh and pinned material. They are studied with light microscopy, documented, coded and analyzed with respect to an existing independent phylogenetic hypothesis.
  • Comparative morphology of the female reproductive tract in Conopidae.
  • pH measurements in solutions with various alcohol concentrations. – Empirical evaluation of the systematic error due to ethanol concentration.

Martin Spies:

  • Continuous physical and electronic inventorying of animal and document holdings at ZSM concerning Chironomidae, as well as their actualisation according to taxonomic or nomenclatural changes in the chironomid system.
  • Continuation of an electronic registry concerning the nomenclature and geographic distribution of the Chironomidae in Europe. Earlier version published as part of the Fauna Europaea database (Sæther & Spies 2004, 2011, Spies & Sæther 2004; see publication list.
  • Continuation of an electronic catalogue and bibliography of Neotropical Chironomidae. First edition published by Spies & Reiss (1996).
  • Successive taxonomic revision of members of the Harnischia complex (Chironomidae), especially of Parachironomus and neighboring genera.