Flower Fly
( Syrphidae )


2010-0625-EB330001-DIPZZZZZ-Syrphidae[1301h25s,F,A,plant-flower]{EXD}-G.jpg

PHOTO COMMENT
The family is very bee-or wasp-like, even buzzing like bees or wasps. However, bees and wasps have two pairs of wings; true flies have just one.

IDENTIFICATION
Identification:Syrphidae
(Linnaeus, 1758)
Common Name:Flower Fly
Life Stage:(A) adult

PHYLOGENY

Phylum:Arthropoda
Class:Insecta
Superorder:Holometabola
Order:Diptera
Suborder:Brachycera
Family:Syrphidae
Subfamily:Eristalinae
Taxon Code:DIPZZZZZ
ITIS TSN#:140969

LOCATION DETAILS
Location
Martin Luther King Regional Shor, Garretson Point, Garretson Point Trail, Francisco Bay Trail, Oakland
County:Alameda County
ECI Site#:CAEB330000
Park/Forest:Martin Luther King Regional Shoreline, EBRPD

RECOGNITION
Its body is darkish brown with orange yellow patches on the sides and upper surface, and it is covered with short fine hairs. It looks remarkably like a honeybee (Apis mellifera). The different species of Eristalis are very difficult to distinguish, but Eristalis tenax is one of the commonest of these honeybee mimics.
Body Length
8-15 mm.

BIOLOGY
Food
This is a large family of flies that eats a wide range of foods. Some are aphid predators. Others feed on detritus, decaying vegetation, wet wood or living plants. Adults feed on nectar or pollen.
Habitat
Adults are often seen hovering in front of flower blooms in gardens in both urban and rural areas.
Active Period
Late March to early December; most common in September and October.
Development
The larva of the Drone-Fly feeds on decaying organic material in stagnant water in small ponds, ditches and drains. Such water usually contains little or no oxygen and the larva breathes through the long thin tube that extends from its rear end to the surface of the water and that gives it its common name of ?rat-tailed maggot?.

HABITAT
Adults are often seen hovering in front of flower blooms in gardens in both urban and rural areas.

CREDITS
Photographer
Eddie Dunbar

REFERENCES
  • Family Syrphidae - Syrphid Flies. (http://bugguide.net/node/view/196). Accessed March 12, 2016. [ IMAGES ]
  • Integrated Taxonomic Information System TSN#140969


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