phildean's picture

Wasp mimic

Observed: 6th August 2011 By: phildean
Berks, Bucks and Oxon Wildlife Trust
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This was found dead in our conservatory. It's about 15mm long. The hind wings are present but very small so it's not a diptera. Unfortunately one antenna is broken. Initially I thought it was a hover fly but the wing venation, presence of hind wings and antennae suggest not. It has no waist so not a wasp. I don't believe it's a bee. I'm mystified - but possibly about to be embarrassed when someone does identify it!!

Species interactions

No interactions present.


Syrphus's picture

I think the 'small hind wing'

I think the 'small hind wing' you identified is the lobe called the alula, visible clearly in the picture. If you examine it carefully, you will see it is attached to the (only) wing. All diptera do actually have hind wings, but they are modified into club-like halteres which act as sensors for stability in flight, flapping rather like real wings. These you can see very easily with the naked eye in craneflies, and less easily in others.



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phildean's picture

Thank you!!

Many thanks for the rapid id. Ispot really is an excellent way of tracking down expertise. I also like the comment about the alula - this led me astray.