Subject: Mexican Cactus Fly?
Geographic location of the bug: Tucson, Arizona
Time: 03:29 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman: I photographed these flies as they visited flowers at the Tucson Botanical Gardens in Tucson, Arizona. I think that they may be Mexican Cactus Flies; and I was hoping that you could confirm that. Of course, you may use the photos if so desired.
How you want your letter signed: Stephen Nelson
This is indeed a Mexican Cactus Fly, Copestylum mexicanum. Though the Mexican Cactus Fly is a member of the Hover Fly family Syrphidae, it does not resemble most other members of the family that look like bees and wasps as protective mimicry.