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Posts from the ‘Flies’ Category


Hover Fly

Syrphus ribesii

Some insects are more accommodating than others when it comes to taking photographs. Not only are some species easier to photograph but actual individuals can vary. Some are off as soon as they catch sight of you whilst others will quite happily sit there until you accidentally nudge them with the lens. Some I swear ask for a make-up artist. Take this little Hover-fly for example which I believe is Syrphus ribesii. Although it did fly off quite a few times, fortunately it only went as far as the next bush. It often depends how warm it is. In my experience the hotter it gets, the harder it gets. I’ve found that for macro photography a warmish overcast day is best. Read more

Dotted Bee-fly

Dotted Bee-fly

Bombylius discolor

Whilst out looking for bumblebees I occasionally come across something more unusual like this little chap. It’s one of the Bee-flies, the more common of which is the Large Bee-fly Bombylius major which sometimes visits gardens. This is the much scarcer Dotted Bee-Fly Bombylius discolor. It’s almost mouse-like with its furry coat and fairy dotted wings but look at that vicious-looking spike coming out of its mouth. What’s that all about? Don’t worry it’s not something to sting you with. It’s just its proboscis which it uses to suck nectar. It’s not exactly harmless though as it’s parasitoid larvae attack the grubs of solitary bees and wasps in their underground nests. It’s thought to prey primarily on the larvae of the Grey or Ash Mining Bee Andrena cineraria. Cute though isn’t it?