What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Dragonfly Nymph?
I was out on the back porch with my kids when I saw a wasp land on the screen, a minute later I looked up and saw another bug fly up and land on the wasp. I had my camera taking pictures of the kids so I walked outside and snapped a few of the bug with the wasp.. just a moment later it flew off with the wasp. I have no idea exactly what kind of bug this is, as it’s the first time I’ve ever seen it around here. Someone said it might be a dragonfly nymph but the google image search I had didn’t look like it. Any idea what it is?
Nick Young
Charleston, SC

Red Footed Cannibalfly eats Wasp

Red Footed Cannibalfly eats Wasp

Hi Nick,
Our favorite aspect of posting your letter and wonderful photo is that we learned the common name of this Robber Fly.  It is a Red Footed Cannibalfly, Promachus rufipes.  The unusual composition of the name brings something interesting to question.  Generally, when “fly” is tacked onto a word like butterfly or dragonfly, the insect is not a true fly.  Crane Fly and Robber Fly would be true flies.  This naming is something of an anomaly since the Red Footed Cannibalfly is a Robber Fly, hence a true fly.  Your photo is a lovely addition to our Food Chain section.

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What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

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