Correction: Tachinid flies


In a recent post (Butterflies Galore), I showed a picture that I said showed native bees with a skipper butterfly. But I was curious about the bees — I’d never seen anything like them before. I couldn’t find anything on the internet, so I emailed the University of Colorado Museum of Natural History. According to the folks there, they aren’t bees, they are a type of tachinid fly! (Adejeania vexatrix)Native bees on Asclepias-13

Turns out that adult Tachinid flies feed on flower nectar, which means that they are pollinators, especially at higher elevations, where bees don’t live. (Alpine flowers on Mt. Evans) On the other hand, their larvae feed on other insects, including some that are harmful to crops. They are found from the tropics to the arctic, and can look like houseflies or be more unusual, like these.

 

About coloradogeography

Amy Law is a second-generation Coloradoan with a passion for her native state. This translated into a Master’s degree in Natural Resources from Colorado State University, and continues as a lifelong fascination with how people and nature interact. From family vacations in the station wagon to travel for work, she's covered the state, and everywhere she goes, she finds new things to see and ideas to explore.
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2 Responses to Correction: Tachinid flies

  1. How cool you were able to track those garden pollinators down! Thanks for sharing.

  2. You know, the folks at the CU Museum of Natural History, like most experts, were very generous with their time and expertise. All I had to do was ask!

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