Saturday 7 July 2012

Zebra-striped hoverfly

It is unfortunate that not many hoverflies have English names - only the Marmalade Hoverfly and the Large Narcissus Fly come to mind. However, this large hoverfly, Scaeva pyrastri, with its very distinctive bold black and white abdominal pattern and hairy eyes could be named the Zebra-striped hoverfly, as suggested by John Wall in BugGuides. It is a high summer hoverfly, I have only seen it in July and August, and is a regular immigrant from the continent, and comes here to breed. It can feed on both tubular, deep flowers, like Red Valerian, Verbena bonairensis, Agapanthus and Lavender and also on flat ones like Fennel. Today's was the first of the year.

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