nightfly's picture

Episyrphus balteatus larva- to pupa- to adult.

Observed: 28th August 2012 By: nightflynightfly’s reputation in Invertebratesnightfly’s reputation in Invertebratesnightfly’s reputation in Invertebratesnightfly’s reputation in Invertebratesnightfly’s reputation in Invertebrates
13 Aug 12 (11)
13 AUG.. 12 (4)
25 Aug 12 (8)
25 Aug 12 (10)
28 Aug. 12 (3)
28 Aug. 12 (14)
28 Aug. 12 (15)
28 Aug. 12 (32)

This larva dropped onto the car in woodland at night from trees overhead, deciduous woods. I placed the larva in a box with various leaves. 12 days later (25th Aug.) it has pupated on a still reasonably fresh oak leaf. The larva was 15mm long, 18 at full stretch. The pupa is 8mm long.
Edit- 28/8/12, 3 days after I noticed it had become a pupa(I dont know exactly when it pupated) I was quite lucky to notice the insect had hatched. The wings hadn't unfurled completely, it happened quickly, less than 2 minutes between the 1st and 4th pics of the adult.

Species interactions

No interactions present.


nightfly's picture

Thanks very much for the IDs

Thanks very much for the IDs Natterjacktoad and Rimo. I hadnt seen any Syrphidae larvae before. Ive only seen sawfly larvae on here on iSpot and they do appear to be much more like small moth caterpillars in structure, this was a bit more like a maggot, I really had no idea what it was but I thought it was something other than a moth larvae, it was quite an interesting find, colourful larva.

Do they feed on leaves? It seemed to drop from a tree onto the windscreen.


Natterjacktoad's picture

Probably feeding on the

Probably feeding on the aphids on the tree! it's a shame they are so maggot-like and probably incur the wrath of gardeners as they are actually of benefit in the garden.
Sarah (NJT)

Sarah Patton

nightfly's picture

Thanks Sarah, a carnivore

Thanks Sarah, a carnivore then.

Thanks for your help on this one.


GrizzledBadger's picture

Episyrphus balteatus ,

Episyrphus balteatus , Marmalade Hoverfly


nightfly's picture

Thanks very much Brock, add

Thanks very much Brock, add the ID and I'll agree it, I would have taken some time to have got this to species as I have no idea about hoverflies.


Wildlife Ranger's picture

Hoverfly Larvae

Cathal Thats a good bit of work

Adding the Tag HOVERLARVAE will add to the Project Gallery

To add a Tag

Enter Edit Tab > Go To DetailsTab > Scroll to Tag Details >Enter HOVERLARVAE > Save


Whats Happening with Nature ??? Visit the Nature Blog

Supporting FEET Conservation work & Biodiversity Recording