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Bee Mimic

 
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NikonUser



Joined: 04 Sep 2008
Posts: 2541
Location: southern New Brunswick, Canada

PostPosted: Wed Jun 24, 2009 6:35 pm    Post subject: Bee Mimic Reply with quote

I guess most of us are familiar with the black and yellow Hover Flies, most recently shown by Doug
HERE
This is another pattern, the bumblebee mimics.
This one is NOT Eristalis (Eoseristalis) anthophorina; evolution has done a great job but the fly-type antennae show its real identity.
105mm MF Micro Nikkor, f/8, ZS PMax

SEE ERIC's CORRECT ID BELOW

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NU.
student of entomology
Quote – Holmes on ‘Entomology’
” I suppose you are an entomologist ? “
” Not quite so ambitious as that, sir. I should like to put my eyes on the individual entitled to that name.
No man can be truly called an entomologist,
sir; the subject is too vast for any single human intelligence to grasp.”
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr
The Poet at the Breakfast Table.

Nikon camera, lenses and objectives
Olympus microscope and objectives


Last edited by NikonUser on Thu Jun 25, 2009 9:11 am; edited 1 time in total
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Eric F



Joined: 11 Nov 2008
Posts: 246
Location: Sacramento, Calif.

PostPosted: Thu Jun 25, 2009 8:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A very nice photo of a splendid bee mimic, NU. But it is not a hover fly (also called flower flies, family Syrphidae), it is a bot fly -- of the genus Cephenemyia, family Oestridae. These bot flies are parasites of deer, elk, moose, etc., where they live in the respiratory tracks of their hosts.

Many different kinds of flies mimic bumble bees and -- because they all tend to have the same body coloration and appearance of their bee model -- you have to look closely at features like wing venation to identify them. Here is a Eristalis (Eoseristalis) anthophorina [photo from BugGuide]:
http://bugguide.net/node/view/52945/bgimage

Eric
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NikonUser



Joined: 04 Sep 2008
Posts: 2541
Location: southern New Brunswick, Canada

PostPosted: Thu Jun 25, 2009 9:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

How embarrassing. No excuses.

However, I interpreted that wing fold as a spurious vein, and was suspicious about the flat face.

Perhaps even more embarrassing is that I just checked my collection, 17 specimens of E. anthophorina of which 3 are actually Cephenemyia sp.

Sincere thanks Eric.
_________________
NU.
student of entomology
Quote – Holmes on ‘Entomology’
” I suppose you are an entomologist ? “
” Not quite so ambitious as that, sir. I should like to put my eyes on the individual entitled to that name.
No man can be truly called an entomologist,
sir; the subject is too vast for any single human intelligence to grasp.”
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr
The Poet at the Breakfast Table.

Nikon camera, lenses and objectives
Olympus microscope and objectives
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Eric F



Joined: 11 Nov 2008
Posts: 246
Location: Sacramento, Calif.

PostPosted: Thu Jun 25, 2009 10:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You're welcome NU. Sorry to be picky -- but it was my job for several decades to identify pest fruit flies (Med fly, etc.) for the state of Calif. -- so being picky was important (couldn't have the state spend millions of $$ eradicating the wrong fly!).

The more difficult identification problem is separating all of the 100's of species (in dozens of genera) of fuzzy, black & yellow, bee-mimicing Syrphidae from one another -- which all look alike (like bumble bees) and have similar wing venation...

Eric
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rjlittlefield
Site Admin


Joined: 01 Aug 2006
Posts: 19323
Location: Richland, Washington State, USA

PostPosted: Thu Jun 25, 2009 10:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Aha! A pest expert! Eric, can I get you to take a look at Business end of a Western Cherry Fruit Fly and check my ID on that beast?

NU, mistakes happen. I for one find it quite reassuring that even the pros get faked out from time to time!

--Rik
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beetleman



Joined: 04 Aug 2006
Posts: 3578
Location: Southern New Hampshire USA

PostPosted: Thu Jun 25, 2009 3:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great photo NU. I like to "freak people out" in public by catching Bee flies and mimics with my hands. Most people see them as stingers. I can usually tell by the way they fly and the lack of long antennae
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NikonUser



Joined: 04 Sep 2008
Posts: 2541
Location: southern New Brunswick, Canada

PostPosted: Thu Jun 25, 2009 3:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Doug.
For a more impressive performance try it with male Yellowjackets - but be "sensored" (began with a d and ended with an n and the 2 middle letters were a and m) sure you have a male.
_________________
NU.
student of entomology
Quote – Holmes on ‘Entomology’
” I suppose you are an entomologist ? “
” Not quite so ambitious as that, sir. I should like to put my eyes on the individual entitled to that name.
No man can be truly called an entomologist,
sir; the subject is too vast for any single human intelligence to grasp.”
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr
The Poet at the Breakfast Table.

Nikon camera, lenses and objectives
Olympus microscope and objectives
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
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