Tag Archives: syrphid fly

Found some pollinators in the chives

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Sunday was a beautiful sunny day to go visit the Pollinator plot at the community garden. The chives have been flowering for some days, and I was looking forward to seeing the bees. Sure enough, the chives were hosting a bee party.

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Facing down the bee mimic

On these beautiful sunny days, I never get tired of watching the bees. It’s so soothing to watch them forage on the asters, the butterfly bush, the goldenrod. Bumblebees, honeybees, Carpenter bees, flying up and down the hill over and over again. But one of these bees is an imposter.

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I’m running out of cute ways to refer to bee flies

Honeybee mimic bee fly

Along with the butterflies and the bees and the birds,  there’s a syrphid fly I’ve been chasing. A bee mimic, to be precise. Mostly likely Eristalis tenax, to be even more precise. It’s the kind of fly that looks just like a bee but it doesn’t exactly act like a bee. Bees methodically go from flower to flower. This fly would land and just pump its belly breathing. When you come in for a closer look, bees ignore you. This fly panics and flies away. And when you finally get a real picture, no way does that look like a bee!

Caught you! Sneaky bee fly.

More syrphid flies and the prettiest bee

Here’s some more syrphid flies that I’ve seen recently.

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A raspberry and a blueberry from the bees

Today’s harvest was brought to you by the bees.

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Honeybees and small carpenter bees in the raspberries. Bumblebees, too, but they’re too fast for me to get a good picture. I caught a Lasioglossum bee in the flowerhead of one of the scallions I planted last fall. And the coriander flower is showing off one of my favorite syphrid flies, the beautifully patterned Toxomerus.

Bees fly and bee flies fly too

Bee fly

The fake bees are here, too. Currently I’m seeing fairly big ones, about the size of a honeybee, but their buzz sounds more like a whine. They look just enough like bees to fool you as they stroll around the flowers, but when they land — no way! That’s a fly.

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Beer and … Bees?

Syrphid fly on fall chysanthemum

We had beautiful warm weather for NERAX North, so nice the honeybees were buzzing around these chrysanthemums growing in planters behind the Tap. But two of them weren’t bees.

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Let hover flies be your pest-killers

Syrphid fly on coriander flower

If you’re going to nurture wildflowers and plant flowers to help the native bees, it doesn’t make sense to kill them. Unfortunately pesticides are only chemicals, and they’re not smart enough to know which bugs not to kill. Fortunately, a nice bonus that comes of planting for bees is that many of the same flowers also attract syrphid flies.

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Bumblebee mimic

Not a bumblebee

There’s so many bumblebees around but they move so quick, I’m often complaining about not getting a good picture of them. Then I saw this one, just sitting around on some flopped-over daffodil leaves. Cool! I thought. I hope it doesn’t fly away when I get close. And it just sat there. Very not like a bumblebee.

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Tiny flowers, tiny flies

Potter or Mason wasp

Cilantro is such a useful plant. If you plant it and clip it quick enough, you can chop up the leaves in Mexican, Vietnamese, or Chinese dishes. Or if it’s too hot to cook, it bolts and flowers. Lots and lots of tiny white flowers, which bring lots of tiny flies. And wasps. These tiny black wasps, are so tiny and busy with the flowers, I didn’t even see they are wasps until I uploaded the picture.
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