Currently viewing the category: "Flies"
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Subject: Need help identifying this bug
Location: Vermont
October 22, 2014 3:44 am
We are trying to figure out what type of bug this is. My son felt something on the back of his neck yesterday and took this bug off the back of his neck. He first thought it was a tick but looking at it, it does not appear to be a tick. It has six legs, with hair that you can see on them. It is kind of flat. It was walking sideways (like a crab) on the napkin after taking it of his neck. Any help identifying this would be appreciated.
Signature: Megan

Louse Fly

Louse Fly

Dear Megan,
This is a blood sucking Louse Fly, and we just posted another image of a Louse Fly from Vermont a few days ago.

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Hover Fly

Hover Fly

Subject: fake wasp
Location: switzerland
October 20, 2014 4:49 am
At first, I thought this was a wasp but it looks like a fly.
thx for your answer
Signature: A.zanos

Dear A.zanos,
You are correct that this is a fly.  Hover Flies or Flower Flies in the family Syrphidae often mimic stinging insects like bees and wasps, which affords the nonstinging flies some protection.

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Louse Fly

Louse Fly

Subject: Unidentified hitchhiker found in arm hair
Location: Newbury, VT
October 18, 2014 7:50 pm
I returned from a walk in the woods and felt a crawler under my shirt sleeve. I pulled my sleeve back expecting a tick and found this tiny critter instead. He was hanging on for dear life and could not be extracted by hand. We used my “mustache comb” to disentangle it and then snapped some pictures . The last picture shows how small it is compared to a tweezer. It seemed rather soft-bodied…
Signature: Dan in the NEK, VT

Hi Dan,
This is a Louse Fly in the family Hippoboscidae.  According to BugGuide:  “This group includes wingless and winged forms. Most winged ones are dark brownish and smaller than house flies. Flat shape and leathery appearance.”
  Winged species have feeble flight and often loose their wings upon landing on a host animal where they can suck blood.  BugGuide also notes:  “Most are found on birds, others on mammals” and we have discovered that some species are found on livestock and others on deer.  Louse Flies can be opportunistic, and if they cannot locate their typical prey, some will feed on human blood.

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Immature Dipterans

Immature Dipterans

Subject: Bug found in bedroom
Location: Swingfield Street, Kent
October 15, 2014 4:45 am
Found several of these bugs on the carpet in the bedroom on returning from a week or so away from the house.
What are they?
Signature: Anthony

As you can not tell from the pictures, I should have said that it is soft and moves a bit like a caterpillar and that the dark portion is at the tail end not the head.
I had a video that showed the above but it was rather big so I did not send it.
I am attaching the photos again in case it is difficult to tie up the 2 emails.

Immature Dipterans

Immature Dipterans

Dear Anthony,
We are unable to provide anything more than a very general identification at this time.  This is an immature Dipteran, the insect order that includes Flies.  They remind us of the larvae of a Bot Fly, but we cannot be certain.  See this posting on BugGuide.

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What killed the Hanging Thief???

What killed the Hanging Thief???

Subject: large Mosquioto like thing
Location: Mobile Bay, Mobile, AL
October 10, 2014 10:59 am
Do you have any idea what this guy is? I would hate for it to bite me.
Signature: tonyh

Hi Tonyh,
This is a predatory Robber Fly in the genus
Diogmites, and members of the genus are commonly called Hanging Thieves.  We personally think that Hanging Thieves look much better living than dead.  Hanging Thieves are adept predators that take prey on the wing, and they often feed on large stinging insects like wasps.  Though we would not discount the possibility of being bitten by a Hanging Thief, we have never received any reports of such a bite and from all we have read, Hanging Thieves are not interested in biting humans.  Because it appears that this Hanging Thief has met with an unnatural end at human hands, we are tagging this posting as Unnecessary Carnage and we hope that should you encounter a Hanging Thief again in the future, that it be allowed to fly off to live a full life preying on other flying insects.

Thank you for the reply.  This guy managed to get into the bar at the local yacht club and a frightened member read a page of the local news paper to him.  Too bad since he is a predator of the bugs that pester us the most down on the water.  I will post the info from below to the yacht club web site in hopes of educating the membership and saving the next hanging Thief we encounter.
Thank you again for the info.
Tony Hines.
here is a link to the post on FB.  We will try to do better next time:

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Possibly Field Crescent

Possibly Field Crescent

Subject: A mystery white, and a checkerspot?
Location: Larimer county, CO, 8100′
October 10, 2014 8:46 am
A couple butterflies I hope you can help with. Both taken same location. Larimer county, Colorado foothills, 8100 feet elevation. October 8, 2014. Warm day, but well past 1st frost. … The second, I believe, is Gorgone checkerspot. Chlosyne gorgone, but not 100% certain. Sorry no pic of underside of this guy.
Signature: Matt in CO

Hi again Matt,
We are not fully convinced that this is a Gorgone Checkerspot, as your individual appears to have different markings than the individuals pictured on BugGuide.  We believe this might be a Field Crescent,
Phyciodes pulchella, which is also pictured on BugGuide, or perhaps a Painted Crescent, Phyciodes picta, which is also pictured on BugGuide.  Perhaps someone with better identification skills can assist us with this identification.  We believe the fly in the image might be a Tachinid Fly.

Thanks again. You may well be right. Both look good, but I especially like field crescent. My ID was largely based on, which, of course, could also be wrongly ID’d

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