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Hover Flies
SYRPHIDAE
 
Eristalinae
Wasp-mimic Hoverfly
Green Hoverfly
Black Hoverfly
Grey Native Drone Fly
Golden Native Drone Fly
Wasp-mimicking Hoverfly
Yellow-face Wasp Fly 
Native-bee-mimic Fly
Black Orange Hover Fly
 
Microdontinae
Waisted Wasp-mimic Fly
Brown Wasp-mimic Fly 
 
Syrphinae
Small Slander Hover Fly
Small Yellow Hover Fly 
Waisted Slender Hoverfly
White-banded Slender Fly
Grey-banded Hover Fly
Yellow-shouldered Fly
Black-headed Hover Fly
Yellow-shoulder Stout Fly
Orange-band Slender Fly
 

 
 

                                               

Wasp-mimic Hover Flies - Subfamily Microdontinae

Family Syrphidae

This page contains pictures and information about Wasp-mimic Hover Flies in subfamily Microdontinae that we found in the Brisbane area, Queensland, Australia.
 
 
The hover flies in Subfamily Microdontinae have antennae directed anteriorly and usually long, but diverse in structure in different species. Head is board. The eyes are bare and wide apart in both sex. They are stoutly built, closely resembling bees or wasps. 
 
PWC_9053.jpg (126369 bytes)
 
Hover Flies in this subfamily can be distinguished by its wing vein patterns. They have short wings with M1+2 and M3+4 bent upwards and r-m cross-vein before meddle of median cell. 
 
The larvae are oval and convex dorsally, soft and flat ventrally, could be mistaken as mollusks. They are found in ants' nests, where the larvae live as scavengers or predators.
 
All species are not commonly seen. We saw each species only one or two times.  

Waisted Wasp-mimic Hover Fly
DSC_7049.jpg (144787 bytes) DSC_7047.jpg (150828 bytes) DSC_7048h.jpg (136642 bytes)
Microdon variegatus, body length 6mm
This Brown Wasp-mimic Hover Fly is distinguished by its extremely long 3rd antenna segment and the pedunculate wasp-like abdomen. Please check this page for more information.
 
 
Brown Wasp-mimic Hover Fly
PWC_5998.jpg (141747 bytes) PWC_9053.jpg (114978 bytes) PWC_9053h.jpg (124174 bytes)
Microdon barringtonensis, body length 10mm
Found this Brown Wasp-mimic Hover Fly in Karawatha Forest near the Lagoon, Sep 2008. We have more photos of this fly here.
 

Reference:
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. A generic conspectus of the Microdontinae (Diptera: Syrphidae) with the description of two new genera from Africa and China - XIN-YUE CHENG & F. CHRISTIAN THOMPSON, Zootaxa 1879: 2148 (2008). 
6. Revision of Australian Syrphidae (Diptera). Part I - Ferguson, E.W. 1926, Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales 51: 137-183 [160]. 

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Last updated: February 09, 2013.