The horse-flies or tabanidae, comprise another set of troublesome creatures, of medium or large size. They have short, broad heads, enormous eyes, and short, though many jointed, feelers. The abdomen is oval, a little flattened, and the body convex and powerful. The mouth parts are well developed, consisting of a series of five sharped-pointed lancets so rigid that they readily pierce the skin and draw blood almost as soon as they touch.
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John B. Smith Economic Entomology (Philadelphia and London: J.B. Lippincott Co, 1896)