Subject: Passenger Flies (Serbia to Slovenia)
Location: Originally Serbia, now Slovenia
February 14, 2013 5:00 am
There was an accident in a tunnel just after we crossed from the Bulgarian border that created a huge backup on the road. While we were at a complete stop on a very warm day in late August we picked up some uninvited passengers we couldn’t seem to shake. 4 Humans and 3 Flies in a BMW wagon. So, to amuse myself I took pictures of them. One in particular was much more interesting than I was expecting.
If you are able to help with identification that would be lovely.
Next up, flies in Germany.
Signature: Curious Girl
Dear Curious Girl,
How sad that your human passengers were less interesting than this fly. We believe this is a Flesh Fly in the family Sarcophagidae. You can see additional images and read about North American species on BugGuide. Interestingly, it appears that this Flesh Fly has picked up some hitchhikers of its own. The red dots on the thorax and leg are most likely phoretic mites that are hoping to be transported to their next meal.
Oh, that makes sense except this fly was no bigger than the others and they were all what I would call, “standard” fly size not one of those big ones like the North American versions seem to be from descriptions but my understanding is these are worldwide and there are many different varieties and sizes?
However, up till now I had thought the red was just pretty decorations adding interest to the fly.
As for the Sarchophagidae it would seem the other two flies I sent with the Flesh Fly could then be Satellite (metopia) Flies which puts them in the same family (? is that correct? Family? I get so confused by classificiations).
Pretty cool they have live births instead of laying eggs.
Anyway, the day I sent these last pics to you I went out here in Cyprus to an explosion of bug life so captured pictures of dozens of interesting flies and little (+ bigger) bees among other things. So, expect more from me soon.
And thanks so much for the assist. It’s soooo cool to know these have names and descriptions in the world.