These flies are truly distinctive. And rather alien looking. Known as Stilt-legged Flies, very little is known of the biology of the Micropezidae other than the larvae are mostly excrement eaters. One Oriental species eats ginger roots and one European species attacks leguminous root nodules. There are 33 species in North America and they mainly live near water. This one was, indeed, near both water and excrement in north Florida. We have seen at least three species there. I had never found a species in Arkansas (until below). There are nine North American genera. (See the key here.) Half the species are in the genus Micropeza. I don't know which genus this one falls into but the large Micropeza genus members are supposed to have a row of bristles on the hind tibia which I cannot make out here. I do know that at least this one waves those marked front legs in a slow dance step which must be a mating signal.

Found this one locally at Petit Jean Seven Hollows trail in the shaded woods. It was doing the apparent family dance of extending and rubbing those forelegs together which really seems to mimic the antennae of a Ichneumid wasp. Fooled me several times anyway. Don't know which species this is but from the shape of the terminus this is a male and may be Rainieria or Taeniaptera. Both of these genera have the clouded wing markings.

This monster-sized Micropezid was also in shaded woods in Perry county.  Tended to hold both forelegs out and close together. The leg color is slightly different from the above. And it was at least 20% larger. Eyes were less reddish. This appears to be a female from the genitalia. I think I can see bristles here but the eye shape is wrong for the Micropeza genus. It may match the male Rainieria type above.

Stooped to drink on the side of my truck rail like a horse in Searcy county. Quite a bit smaller than the above. This is another female with facial structure close to the above. This one had mostly clear wings.

This is almost certainly a member of the Compsobata genus of Micropezidae. Taken in Ohio, this is one of the two in that genus that is ruddy colored. The large posterior genitalia with the anterior hook facing backward is distinctive. Very little known of the biology as with most of these flies.

This is the first in this group I have ever found on my property. Similar to the Searcy individual and also female.