What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Adorable Bees
Location: 15 miles North of Plankinton, SD
August 7, 2015 11:34 am
Dear Bugman,
Can you help me identify these adorable fuzzy bees? I believe they are a native species. They are very docile, feeding on coneflowers, I can gently touch their abdomens. They enjoy watering time, as it is quite hot and dry! There is also a couple of other species of small bees in the pics. Thanks so much. My father and son love your site!
Signature: Kate, Nature Lover

Bee Flies

Bee Flies

Dear Kate, Nature Lover,
Though they resemble Bees, most of the insects in your images are Bee Flies in the family Bombyliidae, probably in the Tribe Bombyliini which is pictured on BugGuide.  Bee Flies and other True Flies can be distinguished from other insects, including Bees, because Flies have a single pair of wings and most other insects have two pairs of wings.  Bee Flies, which do not sting, benefit from their resemblance to stinging Bees.  One of your images includes a single Bee Fly on the same blossom as what appears to be a Longhorned Bee.

Bee Flies

Bee Flies

Longhorned Bee (left) and Bee Fly

Longhorned Bee (left) and Bee Fly

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination
Location: Plankinton, South Dakota

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