What’s this bug?
First of all, Great Site! My daughter has a biology project coming up soon and I am sure she will find this sight handy. My kids and I always seem to be hatching something in a jar. Well, this was our latest surprise. My boys found the cocoon in the dirt in our back yard. So we stuck it in a jar with some dirt. A few days later they found a different cocoon and added it to the jar and there they sat. First inside, then outside for a while and then back inside. One hatched within in a month or so, some sort of moth. We thought the other one didn’t make it since it had been a few months and there was no sign of life. Then one night my son yelled to me that we had a new family member. That’s what we call them, family members. So, with every new family member comes family photos. Our album is becoming quite extensive. This one was not familiar so I didn’t let them hold it, thought it could bite or sting. We searched through our Audubon Society bug book but couldn’t find anything. So I started looking on line and your site has been wonderful but I still can’t find what it is. Is it a Fly or what? Please tell us more…
Riverside, CA

Hi Nancy,
We just ran a letter concerning a Bot Fly about a week ago, but we only had the pupa and no adult photo. Your photo is the first we have received of an adult Bot Fly or Warble Fly, Family Oestridae. The Larvae are endoparasites of various mammals, most notably rodents like squirrels or rats. Other species are parasitic on deer and a human Bot Fly can be found in Central America. The female fly lays eggs where the host will come into contact with them, and the eggs hatch almost immediately due to the warmth of the hosts body. The larvae then enter the hosts body usually through an orifice and then form fleshy warbles with holes to allow the larva to breath. Thanks for your wonderful contribution. Eric Eaton just provided us with the following information: ” Neat that the bot fly hatched! It is one in the genus Cuterebra, which are rodent and rabbit bots (each species prefers either rodents or rabbits). The adults do not feed, in fact have no mouthparts! Really cool, rarely seen….”

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