Robber Fly eats Deer Fly
Location: Clarksburg, MA
July 29, 2011 9:18 am
This is not the Red-Footed Cannibalfly, but still a very cool bug out here in Western MA! Photos are from July 13. (I’ve pasted my comment/story from the RF Cannibalfly post). Thanks!
True story: so I’m out in my backyard looking for bugs to photograph, when I find this robber fly sitting on a fence rail. I approach with the usual care to get as close as possible, but I am having difficulty because of the summer menace in Western MA known as “DEER FLIES.” The only natural way to keep them off of me (that I’m aware of) is to have my dog by my side because apparently dogs taste better to deer flies — anyway I wasn’t subjecting Molly to that torture, so they are distracting me, buzzing around my head when the robber fly takes off right for me. I first thought I was annoying it and had provoked a warning buzz or something, but then I noticed it had landed not too far from its original parking spot. As I got close again, I saw that it now had lunch: one of the deer flies just buzzing around my head! Talk about my hero! I ended up taking quite a few pictures of it and its prey, which can be tricky because I don’t like to scare off bugs from hard -earned meals (I guess it wasn’t that hard-earned in this case, but still). I thought I had done just that when the robber fly left its prey on the fence, only for it to do another buzz-by and land with another deer fly!
Thusly, all I can say is, robber flies may not be man’s best friend, but they might be a close second. (They also deserve a nomination for dog’s best friend.)
Signature: Michael Marlow
Thanks for repeating your story along with photos that illustrate it properly. Robber Flies are truly amazing predators.