Predator

As I said a few months ago, “When I started taking a real interest in invertebrates, flies were the group that surprised me most. Time after time, something I thought was a wasp or bee, even a dragonfly, turned out to be a fly.” Here is one that lives a dragonfly lifestyle, an active, agile aerial predator. It is a Robber Fly, Asilidae. 

Robber fly and bee
Robber fly, Asilidae, and Blue-banded Bee, Amegilla sp.

It is quite large by insect standards, nearly as big as a dragonfly but much more heavily built, and its strength allows it to take much larger prey. This one has caught a Blue-banded Bee (Amegilla sp.) and is perching on a Pentas stalk to consume it. I have also seen them with Soldier Flies (almost bee-sized) and, amazingly, one with a Cicada as big as itself.

There’s a good article about Robber Flies on wikipedia if you would like to know more.

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