What Does Gnat Mean?


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Gnat refers to a stinging fly. It is small and has two wings. The term applies to any of the small insects of the Order Diptera especially of the suborder Nematocera. This Order comprises flies and mosquitoes, gnats and midges. The suborder Nematocera consists of primitive flies. They possess filamentous and multi-segmented antennae. This group covers the recent ancestors of these flies but does not include the descendants of these ancestors.

The suborder Nematocera includes families like Chironomidae (non-biting midges), Tipulidae (crane flies), Culicidae (mosquitoes) and Bibionidae (hairflies), Cecidomyiidae (gall midges), Ceratopogonidae (biting midges) and Simuliidae (black flies). The gnat larvae are mobile and feed on plants. Some of the gnat larvae are carnivorous. Some gnat's help in pollination and some are considered pests.

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