Subject: Bee fly or Bee
Location: Walker, Michigan
June 6, 2014 8:05 am
Friend of mine found this on a tool this morning, thought it was a bee or wasp of some sort. It was near dead so I examined it and deduced that it was a fly masquerading as a stinging insect. I am willing to be wrong, but what do you know? Due to the lack of antennae and it only having two wings I figured I was right on, but let me know please. I also examined your specimens under bee flies on the site and did not find this particular one. A couple of nice pictures to add to your menagerie.
You are correct that this is a fly due to two wings, however, it is not lacking in antennae, but they are greatly more reduced in size than the antennae of the average bee or wasp. This is actually a Hover Fly in the family Syrphidae, and in our opinion, it is Temnostoma alternans, based on the images posted to BugGuide. We also feel that your Hover Fly is a much better mimic of a Yellow-Jacket than the Yellow-Jacket Hover Fly.