Currently viewing the category: "Robber Flies"
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Subject: Is this related to a dragonfly?
Location: Dripping Springs, TX
August 23, 2015 9:18 pm
I live in the hill country of South Texas (west of Austin) and saw this while watching my humming birds on the back porch. At first I thought it was some sort of a dragon fly but after a closer look realized it wasn’t but have never seen something like this especially with the fuzzy tail.
Signature: Diana

Robber Fly

Robber Fly

Dear Diana,
This Robber Fly in the family Asilidae is not even closely related to Dragonflies, but they are both predators that catch prey on the wing, which may have resulted in some evolutionary similarities.  We believe your individual is in the genus
Efferia, perhaps in the Albibarbis group which is pictured on BugGuide.  There are many nice images of Robber Flies from the genus Efferia on Greg Lasley Nature Photography.

Robber Fly

Robber Fly

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Curious what this is…
Location: Kansas City, MO
August 14, 2015 2:34 pm
Dear Sir,
Was working on a log pole bed with my son in our driveway when I spotted this land on our railing. Any idea what this is? I appreciate your help because I can’t even begin to conceive of a description for the Internet that would yield the answer .
Signature: Thanks, William

Red Footed Cannibalfly

Red Footed Cannibalfly

Dear William,
Several predatory Robber Flies have marvelous and descriptive common names and your individual has one of the best.  It is a Red Footed Cannibalfly and your images beautifully document the red feet.

Red Footed Cannibalfly

Red Footed Cannibalfly

Thank you Daniel. Apparently it was “two for one day” that day, because later the same day my wife and I also had our first encounter in the garage with an insect that scared the hell out of us. So I was able to look that one up, and at first I thought it was a Gasteruption Jaculator, but when I read the range for that animal is Europe only, I kept looking and found the Giant Ichneumon on your site. So after learning she’s harmless to humans, I went back in the garage and got her on my hand, and took her out to an old dead stump on our front drive that I’m saving for some woodwork. She probably found plenty of food in there for her young!
When the Red Footed Cannibalfly happen along, I went right back to your website, but I had to ask because I didn’t even know how to begin describing that one in writing.
Thanks again,
Wm

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Subject: Cannibalfly?
Location: Split, Croatia
August 9, 2015 1:51 pm
Hi, I took this picture today on my balcony. I live in Split, Croatia. What kind of bug is that (tha one that eats) and is it normal to meet it in this area? Thank you!
Signature: Irena

Robber Fly and Prey

Robber Fly and Prey

Dear Irena,
The predator in your image is a Robber Fly in the family Asilidae.  We are uncertain of the species, or if it is native to Croatia, but this posting on Diptera Info indicates that members of the family are found in Croatia.

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Subject: Bee?
Location: Midland, Texas
July 31, 2015 11:16 am
This looks like a bee but the hairy legs and wings look strange.
Signature: TLW

Bee Killer

Bee Killer

Dear TLW,
This magnificent predatory Robber Fly is a Bee Killer in the genus
Mallophora, and we believe we have correctly identified it as Mallophora fautrix by comparing your images to this image on BugGuide.

Bee Killer

Bee Killer

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Large insect with wasp prey
Location: West coast of British Columbia
July 29, 2015 3:43 pm
I took these photos on July 29/15 in the town of Nanaimo, on the west coast of British Columbia. This awesome creature was on a salal leaf, in a dry forest of Douglas fir, hemlock, and arbutus. I wanted to get a side view shot as well, but it must have been bothered by my intrusion into its juicy meal, and flew away. Can you tell what species it is? I think I’ve narrowed it down to the Laphria genus, Robber flies.
Thanks a lot. Love your site!
Signature: John Segal

Bee-Like Robber Fly eats Yellowjacket

Bee-Like Robber Fly eats Yellowjacket

Dear John,
Because of the thick antennae that helps to identify the genus, we agree that this is a Bee-Like Robber Fly in the genus
Laphria, and after searching through 10 pages of species on BugGuide, we have narrowed down the possibilities to five species that have yellow thoracic hair and that generally resemble your individual, which appears to be feeding on a Yellowjacket based on this facial closeup on BugGuide.    The abdomen on Laphria fernaldi appears too orange to be your species.  In alphabetical order, the most similar looking species on BugGuide are:  Laphria astur Laphria janusLaphria partitor and Laphria unicolor.  Of those, we believe the images of Laphria astur on BugGuide look the closest, but we are by no means experts in the identification of Robber Flies.  Thanks for your excellent Food Chain contribution, and in the future, we can accept larger digital files to ensure the highest quality of the images on our site.

Bee-Like Robber Fly eats Yellow Jacket

Bee-Like Robber Fly eats Yellowjacket

Hi Daniel,
Thanks very much for helping me identify an insect I’ve never seen before.  I really appreciate it.
Those photos are about 650 X 450 KB; the size I use for email. Let me know if you’d like me to send them again, as larger files, and what the maximum size is that you can receive.
Thanks again.  Excellent website you have there!
John

Hi John,
We can easily accept 5MB files.  We are then able to crop into details like the antennae on this Bee-Like Robber Fly.  You may send them larger and we will crop to some details.

Hi Daniel,
Great! Okay, here are my two photos, each about 1.7 MB.
Thanks again for your great website, and all the work you do for us bug-curious types!
John

Bee-Like Robber Fly eats Yellowjacket

Bee-Like Robber Fly eats Yellowjacket

Thanks for sending the higher resolution files.  Since you already cropped the images the first time, we were not able to magnify much more, but we did move a bit closer.

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Subject: i need to identify this insect
Location: fenton, missouri
July 28, 2015 3:49 pm
Can you please tell me what kind of bug this is?
Signature: however you want

Hanging Thief

Hanging Thief

This is a Hanging Thief, a predatory Robber Fly in the genus Diogmites.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination