rod williams's picture

Hoverfly, Helophilus pendulus

Observed: 25th May 2013 By: rod williamsrod williams’s reputation in Invertebratesrod williams’s reputation in Invertebratesrod williams’s reputation in Invertebratesrod williams’s reputation in Invertebrates

Using its feet to groom its wings. The usual small white abdominal markings are yellow here - the first time I've seen it.

Species interactions

No interactions present.


jeremyr's picture


sorry, my mistake. Orangyness and wide bar at the back of t3 threw me - and I thought the middle legs were the back legs

I was watching a Parhelophilus close-up yesterday for quite a while and then immediately thought a passing Helophilus was another one!

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rod williams's picture

Parhelophilus or Helophilus

I'm not sure if you are saying it's Parhelophilus or Helophilus, Jeremy. (I was rather hoping the former.) If it's Helophilus after all, how to account for the absence of white abdominal markings?

jeremyr's picture


it's just a particularly orange Helophilus, they are often like that, as well as the standard yellow. Photos are tricky though, so I might just stick to the real thing. The things to look out for are the dense orange hairs going all round the abdomen and as ophrys has already pointed out, the antennae. You're not really likely to find Parhelophilus unless you're near water, when you do it's just so orange and compact that you know it can't be anything else

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Wildlife Ranger's picture

Colour of Hovers - General -

Remember also colour can vary with Pollen Feed , White Balance , Exposure and age of specimen in the big scheme of things ( Are you shooting in Landscape Post Processing , Low ISO , or Low Light ) it is only one of a number of criteria.
Looking at the image generally I'd say exposure was on a lower ISO ?????? (below 400 )
I am pretty sure the blue tinge of Leconozona glauca seen in Autumn is due to the Purple Pollen of Angelica on which it feeds

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rod williams's picture


Many thanks, Jeremy and WLR. Parhelophilus would have been new to me. ( H pendulus is extremely common in my neck of the woods - in contrast to H trivittatus, which I've only seen and photographed once.)