Tuesday, July 25, 2006

A conopid fly - Thecophora sp.

Late this afternoon I was giving some detailed scrutiny to the ragwort in M3 when I noticed a small, unusually-shaped fly visiting some of the flowers. I tried to photograph it, but is was too fast and eventually I caught it.

It turned out to be a Thecophora species parasitic on solitary bees.

Again, as with the smaller plants, I often first spot things like this through binoculars having sat quietly for a while. Many entomologists, I suspect, walk through an area, but rarely stop, wait and watch, so they just do not see many of the things that are about.

I originally had this down as Zodion cinereum and I am grateful to Jere for correcting this.

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