Currently viewing the category: "Bee Flies"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: My Moroccan Insect Pix
Location: Morocco
November 24, 2016 10:09 am
Dear Daniel Marlos:
Just happened upon your site and decided to let you know about my own minor efforts in entomology. I spend a good deal of my time (retired) in Morocco and one thing I do is take photos of all sorts of subjects, including plenty of ‘bug’ pictures – especially bees and butterflies. Many are as yet to be uploaded since I’m trying to learn the basics about taxonomy but, alas, it’s slow going!
Perhaps you could take a few minutes and look at some of the galleries. If you, or another entomologist, might see scientific value in helping with identification, that would certainly reinforce me efforts. I just did a Google image search for ‘Bees of Morocco’ and see that the majority of images that come up are my own.
The website is: darbalmira.com You’ll see the table of contents on the left side with the various insects photos as submenus. As I said, I have lots more photos but have been holding back since I think it’s important to put a name on living creature – not just ‘bee’ or ‘bug’.
Thanks for any help or suggestions you might offer.
Jearld Moldenhauer
Signature: Jearld Moldenhauer

Bee Fly

Bee Fly

Dear Gearld,
Your images are beautiful, especially that of the only one we can identify to the family without research.  It is the green-eyed Bee Fly from the family Bombyliidae.  Today is American (USA) Thanksgiving and our staff is cooking, so we will attempt a species identification at a later time, as well as trying to identify your Hymenopterans.  In the future, please only submit one insect per submission.  It makes it easier to classify.  The only exception would be insects in the same family or those that have a symbiotic or predator/prey relationship.  You should know that our editorial staff is composed of artists, not entomologists, so we cannot commit to identifying your unknown critters, but if you send them to us, one individual per submission, we will be happy to research to the best of our ability. 

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: identification
Location: Tucson, AZ
October 6, 2016 6:04 pm
Dear Bugman,
I am submitting a few photos of insects for identification. They were taken between October 1 and 4 2016 in our community garden in Tucson, AZ.
Image 1 I believe to be a bee fly, perhaps of genus Exoprosopa.
…I would be very happy if you could identify the insets in these photos that I would like to share with my fellow gardeners.
Thanks very much!
Signature: Melody

Bee Fly

Bee Fly

Dear Melody,
We agree that this is a Bee Fly in the family Bombyliidae, but in our opinion, you have the genus misidentified.  The pattern on the wings looks more like the pattern on the wings of
Dipalta serpentina which is pictured on BugGuide.  According to BugGuide:  “The wing venation is quite distinctive: the radial segment R2+3 is strongly contorted into an ‘S’-shape, and is connected (at first sinus of the ‘S’) by a cross-vein to R4 (see wing diagram from the MND here).”  BugGuide also notes:  “Larvae are parasitoids of pupae, and perhaps also larvae, of antlions (Myrmeleontidae).”

Dear Daniel,
Thanks very much for the inset identification. I didn’t know the Bug Guide rules so apologize for sending photos of on-related species.
I am attaching the same photo of the dorsal view of the bee fly along with a three quarter view in which the pattern of dark pigmentation in the wing is more easily seen. This pigmentation pattern does not quite match that of the Dialta serpentina photo on Bug Guide. But perhaps pigmentation is variable and venation is what is what is used for identification purposes?
Thanks again. I am just a gardener, not a dedicated bug geek, but am always fascinated by the diversity of insects we see in our organic garden.
Thanks again!
Melody

Bee Fly

Bee Fly

Hi again Melody,
For clarification, we are What’s That Bug? and we frequently cite BugGuide, an entirely different website when we attempt to identify the submissions we receive.  There is no need for you to apologize.  While we attempt to identify as many submissions as we can, we are also interested in posting excellent submissions to our archive, and that is the primary reason we request that submissions be limited to a single individual, species or family, unless there are extenuating circumstances.  With that stated, with difficult identifications, often multiple views of the same individual are helpful in making identifications, and for that reason, we allow our curious readership to attach up to three images.  Regarding pigmentation pattern, there is often variation within a single species, and veination pattern is a more scientifically accepted method for taxonomic identification.  That said, our editorial staff does not have any formal entomological background, so our identifications are questionable at best.  We are frequently wrong and we enthusiastically welcome corrections from true experts.  If you look at other images on BugGuide of
Dipalta serpentina, you will see that there are individuals with pigmentation patterns that are similar to your individual.  Finally, modern identification is depending more and more on DNA analysis, which is leading to lumping together of formerly distinct species and subspecies, and splitting apart of formerly single species.  At the end of the day, insects and other creatures are better at identifying potential mates in their own species than we humans are.
P.S.  Your Ant identification request is still on our back burner, and we would humbly request, if you have the time and you want to make our posting a bit easier, for you to resubmit the image, use our standard submission form, and attach multiple views of those Ants so we are able to more carefully consider their physical characteristics.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Bee Flies are Dipalta serpentina
Location:  Mount Washington, Los Angeles, California
September 17, 2016 1:30 PM
Earlier in the week, we posted an image of a Bee Fly we identified as
Villa lateralis and we wrote about a brown Bee Fly that we were unable to capture as an image.  Well, today we took several images of the same brown Bee Fly species, and as the afternoon progressed, we got additional images.  At one point, we got images of four individuals taking nectar from the blooming chives, and after putting the camera away, we spotted a fifth individual.  We are relatively certain we have correctly identified these Bee Flies as Dipalta serpentina thanks to this BugGuide image.  According to BugGuide:  “For many years it was stated that Dipalta were parasitoids of antlion larvae. …  However, the 1989 paper by Leech & Leech demonstrated a clear instance of Dipalta serpentina parasitizing the pupal stage of an antlion (rather than the larval stage). D. serpentina might also parasitizes antlion larvae, though it seems to be in question (earlier observers may have not observed carefully enough to distinguish between larval & pupal parasitism).”

Bee Fly

Bee Fly

Bee Fly

Bee Fly

Two Bee Flies

Two Bee Flies

And then there were four Bee Flies

And then there were four Bee Flies

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Bee Fly, Villa lateralis
Location:  Mount Washington, Los Angeles, California
September 13, 2016 5:20 PM

Bee Fly:  Villa lateralis

Bee Fly: Villa lateralis

Late this afternoon, I noticed one more brown Bee Fly and two other black and white Bee Flies, that all looked quite similar except for the coloration, in a sunny area getting the late afternoon light.  The two black and white individuals were buzzing one another near the blossoming chives.  By the time I returned with the camera, only one individual remained, and we are pretty certain we have correctly identified it as Villa lateralis, first on the Natural History of Orange County site and then on BugGuide.  According to BugGuide:  “Widely distributed in North America including Puerto Rico and South to Panama.”  Upon viewing the other members of the genus on BugGuide, we can’t help but to wonder if the brown Bee Fly we saw was the related Villa miscella.  Though we did not get an image, our memory was of it having brown on the wings.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What the heck is this?
Location: Chichester, Quebec
August 26, 2016 8:03 am
Hello bugman,
My mother recently took a picture of a strange bug she saw on her farm. I tried looking up what bug it is on google with no success and we are both really curious as to what it is. Can you help?
Thank you very much and have a nice day!
Signature: Angie

Bee Fly:  Lepidophora lutea

Bee Fly: Lepidophora lutea

Dear Angie,
This unusual fly is a harmless Bee Fly,
Lepidophora lutea.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Flying bug
Location: Flinton Ontario Canada
August 12, 2016 12:01 pm
Just want to know what this is and to learn more about it. Thank Kat
Signature: Kat

Bee Fly

Bee Fly

Dear Kat,
We are pretty sure we have identified your Bee Fly as
Lepidophora lutea on BugGuide because it has a more northerly range than the very similar looking Scaly Bee Fly, Lepidophora lepidocera, which is also pictured on BugGuide and looks quite similar.

Fantastic. Thanks so much for identifying the Bee Fly. How very interesting.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination