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What insect is this?

Found this in southern Bangalore, India. Looked dangerous, flew really slowly with its body upright and legs spread out and landed on a wall.

Size: about 1.5 inches tall, 1.5 inches wide, when spread.

These photos are zoomed in and rather dull colored, but the actual color was a bright orange, like #FF9050 and dark black.

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  • $\begingroup$ The long legs suggest one of the crane fly families (Tipulidae, Cylindrotomidae, Pediciidae, Limoniidae, Tanyderidae most likely; Ptychopteridae and Trichoceridae less so); the pointed abdomen tells me your subject was female. The patterned wings might make identification a little easeir--if India has a version of bugguide.net, that would be your next stop. $\endgroup$
    – user32396
    Commented Jun 30, 2018 at 2:18
  • $\begingroup$ @ArthurJFrost: Thanks, you pointed me the right way. I dug it up. See my posted answer! Cheers! $\endgroup$
    – SNag
    Commented Jul 2, 2018 at 13:01

1 Answer 1

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Pselliophora laeta, a species of crane fly (Tipulidae) in the Ctenophorinae subfamily.

Route to discovery: Reverse image searching my own photo on Google led me to a matching image on Naturalista (Familia Tipulidae), and in-turn to iNaturalist, which showed me to Genus Dictenidia. Further Googling for "Genus Dictenidia" brought up many families of crane-fly, which I visually scanned until I spotted it -- Pselliophora! That led to Wikipedia, and to this image, which mentions its source to be whatsthatbug, where the discussion cites Pselliophora laeta on India Nature Watch.

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1 Source: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/299363
Observed: Thiruvananthapuram, India; Jul 28, 2012 5:13 PM IST

Mating Crane Flies from India 2 3 Source: https://www.whatsthatbug.com/2010/09/30/mating-crane-flies-from-india/
Observed: Mumbai, India; Sep 30, 2010 1:43 AM IST

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