Bristle Fly from Australia: Amphibolia vidua

Is this a bristle fly
Location: Healesville, Victoria Australia
November 29, 2010 2:53 pm
Hello Bugman, I believe this is a bristle fly going on the photos I’ve seen here. This is only the second of these flies I’ve ever seen here after 13 years of living in the area. It was seen in Healesville, Victoria, Australia on Nov 29th 2010, that’s just a couple of days before Summer.
Signature: Linda

Bristle Fly

Hi Linda,
The first time we posted a photo of this distinctive fly in 2007, we posted it as an unidentified Tachinid Fly.  In 2009, we posted another image, still unidentified, and we eventually learned it is
Amphibolia vidua and the common name Bristle Fly is used for the family Tachinidae, the Tachinid Flies.  You are correct in calling your individual a Bristle Fly.

Bristle Fly

would you like some more photos for your files?  I tried to put them on yesterday but they were all too big.  I’m happy to email them to you if you want them.
Just to give you some more information-  I’ve seen one of these flies once before here, about 5 years ago, it was very sluggish and divebombed me, and in my panic I swatted and killed it.  The black shape on the rump (do flies have rumps?)  was very slightly different to this one, it was a perfect heart shape.  I assume they are the same type of fly and there’s just a bit of individual variation.
Thanks so much for getting back to me, your site is fantastic!
Linda Meerman

Bristle Fly

Thanks for the additional information and photos.

14 thoughts on “Bristle Fly from Australia: Amphibolia vidua”

  1. The CSIRO’s giant tomes “The Insects of Australia” has a colour plate with one of these – but gives it as Formosia speciosa. Annoyingly, I can find no other mention of the species or genus online :/

  2. d’oh – I shouldn’t have said “other mention online” should have I? Yes, it is actual printed media – a double volume of immense value to Australian entomologists

  3. In reply to bugman:
    Reference to Formosia speciosa does indeed exist online. Formosia (Euamphibolia) speciosa, in one instance, and Google search for that reveals several more Australian sources. It may have once been treated as the same species, Idk, but is now classified as a different Genus to Amphibolia vidua. In some ways they look similar, but not the same.

    • No, but we update comments daily and our editorial staff approves all comments to ensure there is nothing inappropriate.
      Thanks for your research regarding this posting.

      • Thanks bugman, I thought it seemed not. A couple of unregistered posts only disappeared into the ether tho.. While registered posts remain, ‘awaiting moderation’. Oh, and.. I didn’t do much research for this posting, but I do a fair bit for my own interests anyway – which is specifically in Tasmanian species. Cheers.

  4. Hi folks. I have just seen this same dude on my way back inside tonight. I’m in Montmorency, Victoria. It’s blue colouration of the dots caught my eye. I’ve never seen one here so had to try and identify it ….. curiosity and all that! Thanks for having this info. available so I could identify it.


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