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Author Topic: Our friend, the syrphid fly  (Read 1982 times)

Offline Cindi

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Our friend, the syrphid fly
« on: November 26, 2006, 10:27:42 am »
This little fly is a welcome insect around my  house.  When it is first noticed, it may appear to be a small wasp or hornet.  It may hover infront of your face and may look a little intimidating.  It is interesting how they hover, I think that they do this so they can see if there is a bug that they can eat, don't know why they think a human would have a bug on them (particularly and aphid), but they certainly very often do come and have a good luck.  I have often mistaken them for a wasp, then realize that a wasp would certainly not hover and look so closely, but would probably bite you.  Adults are 10 to 12 mm long, marked with yellow, black, or white bands. Adults feed only on pollen, nectar, and honeydew. Their larvae are about 12 mm long, wrinkled or slug-like in appearance, tappering to a point at the head. They are usually brown or green with whitish areas. Eggs are chalky white.  Syrphids overwinter as pupae in the soil or above ground in leaves and plant material. Adults emerge in May and June and lay eggs on leaves and stems of plants infested with prey. Larvae feed for 7 to 10 days, then drop to the soil to pupate. A life cycle is completed in 16 to 28 days and there are 3 to 7 overlapping generations each year. Syphid fly larvae feed on soft-bodied insects, particularly aphids. As many as 400 aphids may be consumed by one larva during its development.  So, you can see that these are certainly friendly and beneficial additions to anyone's gardens.  I find that they  love the fragrant honeysuckle that I have trained around my bedroom patio.  This honeysuckle blooms all summer, so I am fortunate to be able to watch these busy little insects having a wonderful time with my vines.  Great day.  Cindi

There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service