This family includes a wide variety of forms exhibiting highly specialized adaptations for parasitic life. The adults of most species are 1.5—2,5 mm in length; a few Neotropical species may be 0.75—5.0 mm (Wenzel and Peterson, 1987). Several genera are flattened dorsoventraliy and superficially resemble hippoboscids or nycteribiids (Fig. 17.3). A few are flattened laterally and resemble fleas. Although most streblids are winged and very mobile, there may be different degrees of wing reduction even within a single genus. The head is usually small in the Streblidae, and the antennae are inconspicuous. The Streblidae lack ocelli, and the compound eyes are absent or reduced to one or only a few facets. The marked reduction of the eyes of both Streblidae and Nycteribiidae appears to be associated with their occurrence on bats as nocturnal hosts.

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