Definition of deerfly in English:


Syllabification: deer·fly
Pronunciation: /ˈdi(ə)rˌflī


  • 1A bloodsucking horsefly that attacks humans and other large mammals. It can transmit various diseases, including tularemia.
    • Genus Chrysops, family Tabanidae: several species, including C. callidus, widespread throughout North America
    More example sentences
    • Biting flies common in the U.S. include the species Chrysops discalis (deer fly), Chrysops aestuans, Chrysops relictus, and Chrysozona pluvialis.
    • Having the rabbit as my companion, albeit for only a short while, was a welcome distraction from the black deer flies attracted by my sweat.
  • 2A bloodsucking louse fly that is a parasite of deer. It loses its wings on finding a host, and the female gives birth to fully grown larvae.
    • Lipoptena cervi, family Hippoboscidae
    More example sentences
    • Swatting at mosquitoes and deer flies, the five picked their way through the Florida scrub, trying to avoid the briars and sawgrass sharp as a sword blade.
    • The mosquitoes and horse and deer flies were out in force and bent on extracting blood and flesh.
    • For years I had a terrible problem with face flies, deer flies and ticks.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day tortie
Pronunciation: ˈtɔːtiː
a tortoiseshell cat