Body length 3.5 to 5 mm; colour yellowish with brown tinge, especially on abdomen, legs, and some markings on wings. Lower corners of face with white setae. Ocellar bristles present. Male has pair of bristles with enlarged spatulate tips next to inner margins of eyes. Thorax creamy white to yellow with characteristic pattern of black blotches. Light areas with very fine white bristles. Humeral bristles present. Dorsocentral bristles anterior of halfway point between supraalar and acrostichal bristles. Scutellum inflated and shiny black. Abdomen oval with fine black bristles scattered on dorsal surface and two narrow transverse light bands on basal half. Extended ovipositor 1.2 mm long. Wings, usually held in a drooping position on live flies, are broad and hyaline with black, brown, and brownish yellow markings. Wide brownish yellow band across middle of wing. Apex of anal cell elongate. Dark streaks and spots in middle of cells in and anterior to anal cell.
The males are easily separated from all other members of this family by the black pointed expansion at the apex of the anterior pair of orbital setae. The females can be separated from most other species by the characteristic yellow wing pattern and the apical half of the scutellum being entirely black
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