We evaluated the bacteria occurring externally on Musca domestica and Chrysomya megacephala, the two most common synanthropic flies which may be found at many refuse sites throughout the world. Bacteria cultured from 10 specimens of each species were isolated, Gram-stained and examined microscopically, and divided into morphologically distinct ‘pseudospecies', to avoid excessive duplication of genetic identification. About 350 bp of the 16S ribosomalRNAgene was amplified from genomicDNAextracted from each ‘pseudospecies', sequenced, and bacteria identified using BLASTn. Nineteen different types of colony were identified from M. domestica, with Pseudomonas sp. and Swine Manure Bacterium SP14 being most abundant. Chrysomya megacephala yielded 15 distinct pseudospecies with total colony counts approximating to 10 000 from 10 plates, where 80 % of colonies were non-pathogenic Bacillus pumilus. A total of 18 species were identified genetically: three shared by the fly species; four unique to C. megacephala, and 13 unique to M. domestica. Half of these 18 species were pathogenic, two or three others were food spoilers and the rest were environmental or commensal bacteria from soil or plant matter. This study added three new pathogenic strains of bacteria and one new environmental strain to the list of bacteria reported to be vectored by these flies.
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