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

Subject: ID bug please
Location: Ohio, USA
June 13, 2016 1:05 pm
Here’s an interesting bug I found around home in northeast Ohio. It was a cool day, so he wasn’t moving very fast. Any thoughts?
Signature: htvmm

Golden Backed Snipe Fly

Golden Backed Snipe Fly

Dear htvmm,
This is a beautiful image of a Golden Backed Snipe Fly.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Mystery Bug
Location: Troy, Michigan USA
June 2, 2016 6:27 am
Saw one yesterday 2016 June 1 in the backyard where I have tomato plants, cucumbers, green beans, zucchini, squash, peach tree, apple tree, rose bush, hubbard squash, buttercup squash, parlsey, leek, chives, sun chokes, marigolds, hostas, pink coral bells, petunias, dianthus and other stuff growing. Saw one around 7am today June 2 on the rose bush in front. Then saw 2 more mating on the concrete in front about 1.5-2 hours later. I want to know the common and scientific name if you can tell me so I can research if it bites or is a pest to my flowers, fruits and veggies. It is summer here in Michigan. I live north of Detroit in southern Oakland County Michigan in a residential area in the suburbs.
Signature: Curious

Mating Golden Backed Snipe Flies

Mating Golden Backed Snipe Flies

Dear Curious,
These are mating Golden Backed Snipe Flies,
Chrysopilus thoracicus, and according to BugGuide:  “Life Cycle Details unknown. This fly is observed in early to mid-spring perched quietly on low vegetation in deciduous woodlands.”  Of the family Rhagiionidae, BugGuide notes:  “Both adults and larvae are predaceous on a variety of small insects. Most do not bite, but Symphoromyia females [known as Rocky Mountain Bite Flies] are common biting pests in the western mountains and coastal areas.”  So, this is either a beneficial insect, or a benign insect that will not harm the numerous plants in your garden.

Golden Backed Snipe Fly

Golden Backed Snipe Fly

 

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: what is this???
Location: West Virginia
June 9, 2015 4:14 am
Heard and saw this on my back porch last night about 3 am. Thought it was a beetle before it landed. I thought it might be a horsey of some kind but ill let you be the judge of that.
Signature: Ed

Gold Backed Snipe Fly

Golden Backed Snipe Fly

Dear Ed,
Each year in June, we get several images of Golden Backed Snipe Flies, and most come from Ohio and Pennsylvania, across the border from you.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Morphing Pods
Location: John Bryan State Park – Yellow Springs, OH
June 7, 2015 9:06 am
I live in Ohio and was walking through the woods on May 17th. We were down by the creek and on the over hanging rocks we found these strange pods. Some looked like they could be scale bugs but as we examined more we could see the cycle unfold. The pale off white dripping pods eventually turned into so sort of flying insect. Could you shed any light on what sort of creatures they could be?
Thank you!
Signature: Curious Naturalist

Mystery Insects

Mystery Insects may be Fungus Infection

Dear Curious Naturalist,
We wish you had better quality images.  We do not know what is going on here, but it appears there are several different species of insects along with what you are calling “Morphing Pods”, and we have not been able to find anything similar looking online.  The larger white bodies insects with dark markings and wings do not look familiar to us, but hopefully one of our readers will be able to provide some information.  Can you provide any additional information regarding the size of the things in question?

Mystery

Fungus Infection

Mystery

Fungus Infection

I am sorry about the quality I only had my phone on my at the time. They were no bigger than a small fingernail. It was almost as if they were globs sprouting wings, then eyes and so on. At first I thought it was the early life cycle of another insect I had seen but I am an amateur and can not tell if they are similar enough. here is what I thought they MIGHT turn into.  Thank you so much for taking the time to help me with this mystery.

Golden Backed Snipe Fly

Golden Backed Snipe Fly

Thanks for the additional information.  The new image you provided is a Golden Backed Snipe Fly and we don’t believe it has any connection to the pods you observed.

Eric Eaton confirms our own suspicion
Daniel:
I’m thinking the “cycle” is the other way around.  It looks clear to me that these are midges that have become infected with some kind of entomopathic fungus.  This is certainly well-documented in other flies, but I haven’t seen a group effect like this before.
Eric

Thanks so much Eric,
We had pondered the possibility that this might be a fungus.  Thanks for the confirmation.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: An Elegant looking fly
Location: Andover, NJ
June 1, 2015 4:50 pm
I spotted this insect which I believe is some sort of fly on my storm door over the weekend. It is near what appears to be an exuvia, perhaps its own? The insect was between 1/2 and 3/4 inch in length with very striking wing patterns. Not a great shot, but hopefully shows enough detail for an ID.
Your help is always most appreciated!
Signature: Deborah E. Bifulco

Snipe Fly

Common Snipe Fly

Dear Deborah,
Flies do not emerge from exuvia, a term that usually applies to the shed skin of a nymph.  The only insects that have wings on the exuvia are Mayflies, which have an initial molt into a winged subadult, quickly followed by a second molt.  Flies emerge from puparia.  We believe what you have mistaken for an exuvia is a dead insect, but we are unsure which insect.  We quickly identified your Common Snipe Fly as
Rhagio mystaceus, which as luck would have it, was one of the first images we found on BugGuide when attempting the identification.  There is no real information on BugGuide, and the information on iNaturalist is limited to the physical description.

Thank you very much for the ID, as well as the great info re the exuvia.  It makes more sense that it is a dead insect, especially with the wings.  I should have known that!
Debbi

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Unknown fly from western MD
Location: Western Maryland
May 30, 2013 2:36 am
Hi Bugman,
Another query for you. This one I’m fairly sure is a fly, at least. I looked through the fly pages, but couldn’t find anything that looked similar.
Photo was taken 5/26/13 in Swallow Falls State Park in western Maryland, in a forested area about 100 yards away from the river. Subject was about the size of a regular house fly. Apologies for the lack of detail, picture taken with iphone.
Signature: long time reader, first time caller

Snipe Fly

Snipe Fly

Dear long time reader,
We believe this is a Snipe Fly.  You can compare your image to the Common Snipe Fly,
Rhagio mystaceus, photos on BugGuide.  There isn’t much species information posted, but the data page shows most sightings in May and June.  The family page on BugGuide states:  “Both adults and larvae are predaceous on a variety of small insects.”   

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination