- This page contains pictures and information about Drone Flies in subfamily Eristalinae that we found in the Brisbane area, Queensland, Australia.
- Eristalinae is a large subfamily which include different tribes. Those
hover fly in different tribes look very different and have different
habitats. They are from small to medium in
size. Some have mimic colours (Batesian
mimics of Hymenoptera) makes them
look like bees or wasps while some others have slender body.
- This subfamily has the widest range of larval habitats. Most Eristalinae larvae are saprophagous.
They live in sap trails, under bark, in rot-holes in trees and in decaying organic material such as dung and compost. Some live as scavengers on the remains of insects and other material. Others are leaf miners, tunnel in stems and root. Some are
specialize on wax-secreting aphids. Some are parasitoids in wasp or bees nests.
- Wasp-mimic Hoverfly
- Ceriana (Ceriana) ornata (Cerioides ornata), body length 12mm
- Pictures were taken in Karawatha Forest near the Lagoon on
Sep 2010. There were a few of them on a large gum tree trunk. They rested on
the tree trunk and dip its abdomen on the bark surface regularly, seemed
putting some invisible marks on the tree trunk. We did not know what exactly
they were doing. We have more information on this page.
Tribe Eristalini, Eristalina
- The hover flies in this tribe are medium in size. They have scout body with
black stripes on yellow colours. They resemble small bees. They are common and conspicuous. These flies are common pollinators on flowers.
The larvae are known as rat-tailed maggots. They are aquatic and have a distinctive habitus.
They are filter feeders in flesh waters. The larvae purify water by filtering out microorganisms and other products.
vein R2+3 sinuate, cell R1 usually petiolate.
- Green Hoverfly
- Austalis copiosa, body length 8mm.
- This Hover Fly is metallic green and brownish-yellow in colours. Head and
legs are bright yellow. There are dark and pale stripes on metallic green
thorax. The arista is bare. Wings are clear and glassy. There is a board dark
brown-green stripe at the middle of brownish-yellow abdomen. Please
visit this page for more information.
- Black Hoverfly
- Austalis pulchella, body length 8mm.
- Picture taken in Alexandra Hill near the creek during early summer. Please
check this page for more information.
- Grey Native Drone Fly
- Eristalinus (Lathyrophthalmus) hervebazini, body length 10mm
- The fly was found hovering among leaves. When rest, it stay on the bottom
side of leaf. There are more pictures and information in this page.
- Golden Native Drone Fly
- Eristalinus (Lathyrophthalmus) punctulatus, body length 10mm
- Pictures were taken in Wishart Outlook along Bulimba Creek during a very hot day
in late summer. When flying the fly produced
loud buzz similar to bees buzzing. More information can be found in this page.
Tribe Eristalini, Helophilina
- - vein R 2+3 strongly sinuate, cell R1 open.
- Wasp-mimicking Hoverfly
- Mesembrius bengalensis. body length 10mm,
- We often found this wasp-mimic fly in bush during early summer. It has dark colour wings, yellow and
black bands body and large eyes, the warning colours just good enough to mimic
a wasp. But it has short
antenna, one pair of wings and those tell it is a fly. Please click on here
for more information. Please check this page for
- Yellow-face Wasp-mimic Hover Fly
- Eumerus aurifrons, body length 8mm
- We found a few of them hovering near the ground. This fly has very good
hovering technique. It can stay still at a single spot in air firmly for a
long time, then suddenly move to another spot very quickly and stay there.
Please check this page for more
- Native-bee-mimic Fly
- Eumerus peltatus, body length 6mm
- This is a small Hover Fly. It is dark brown to black in colours. Head is
black with white face and reddish brown antenna. Thorax and scutellum are
black. Abdomen is black with three pair of lunules markings. Please check this page for more
photos and information.
- Black and Orange Hover Fly
- Psilota sp., body length 8mm
- Pictures taken in Karawatha Forest on Sep 2010. Please check this page
- 1. Insects
of Australia - CSIRO, Division of Entomology, Melbourne University
Press, 2nd Edition 1991, p763.
- 2. Insects of Australia and New Zealand - R. J. Tillyard, Angus
& Robertson, Ltd, Sydney, 1926, p368.
- 3. Family SYRPHIDAE -
Australasian/Oceanian Diptera Catalog - Web Version, by F. Christian Thompson & J.R. Vockeroth, 2007.
- 4. Syrphidae - Graeme's Insects of Townsville, Australia.
- 5. Northern
Territory Insects, A Comprehensive Guide CD - Graham Brown, 2009.
- 6. Austalis, a new genus of flower flies (Diptera: Syrphidae) with revisionary notes on related genera -Thompson, F. C 2003, Zootaxa 246: 1-19 .
- 7. Revision of Australian Syrphidae (Diptera). Part
I - Ferguson, E.W. 1926, Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales 51: 137-183 .
- 8. Notes on Australian diptera
(XXIV), Key to Australian Eumerus species (Syrphidae) - Paramonov
S.J., 1957, Annals and Magazine of Natural History 12 10: 125-128 .
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