annmarcaida

annmarcaida:

image

The Fly by William Blake

Little fly,
Thy summer’s play
My thoughtless hand
Has brushed away.

Am not I
A fly like thee?
Or art not thou
A man like me?

For I dance
And drink and sing,
Till some blind hand
Shall brush my wing.

If thought is life
And strength and breath,
And the want
Of thought is death,

Then am I
A happy fly,
If I live,
Or if I die?

****************************************************

Author: William Blake

Image: Kazuka Akimoto

alex-does-science
astronomy-to-zoology:

Golden-backed Snipe Fly (Chrysopilus thoracicus)
…a species of snipe fly (Rhagionidae) that is distributed throughout eastern North America. Adult C. thoracicus typically inhabit Deciduous woodlands and are active during spring, April through May.  Adults are thought to be predatory on other insects, but they may not feed often.
Classification
Animalia-Arthropoda-Insecta-Diptera-Orthorrhapha-Tabanomorpha-Rhagionidae-Chrysopilus-C. thoracicus
Image: ©Mike Burchett

astronomy-to-zoology:

Golden-backed Snipe Fly (Chrysopilus thoracicus)

…a species of snipe fly (Rhagionidae) that is distributed throughout eastern North America. Adult C. thoracicus typically inhabit Deciduous woodlands and are active during spring, April through May.  Adults are thought to be predatory on other insects, but they may not feed often.

Classification

Animalia-Arthropoda-Insecta-Diptera-Orthorrhapha-Tabanomorpha-Rhagionidae-Chrysopilus-C. thoracicus

Image: ©Mike Burchett

Yosemite National Park - CA, USA
Bumblebee mimic robber flies (Laphria astur) resemble bumblebees, but they are really just flies that cannot sting. 
Robber flies have their name because they rob the life right out of their prey. They lurk on leaves of plants, watching for unsuspecting honey bees all the while pretending to be a bee itself. Then they catch their prey with their strong forelegs, paralyze it and sucks all the juices out—leaving nothing but an empty shell.

Bumblebee mimic robber flies (Laphria astur) resemble bumblebees, but they are really just flies that cannot sting.

Robber flies have their name because they rob the life right out of their prey. They lurk on leaves of plants, watching for unsuspecting honey bees all the while pretending to be a bee itself. Then they catch their prey with their strong forelegs, paralyze it and sucks all the juices out—leaving nothing but an empty shell.

Dioctria atricapilla is a species of robber fly in the subfamily Dasypogoninae, found in grassy environs throughout Eurasia. Measuring 9–12 millimetres (0.35–0.47 in) in length, with a 7–9 mm (0.28–0.35 in) wingspan, it feeds mainly on smaller flies and predatory hymenopterans.
Photo: Richard Bartz                                                        via: Wikipedia

Dioctria atricapilla is a species of robber fly in the subfamily Dasypogoninae, found in grassy environs throughout Eurasia. Measuring 9–12 millimetres (0.35–0.47 in) in length, with a 7–9 mm (0.28–0.35 in) wingspan, it feeds mainly on smaller flies and predatory hymenopterans.

Photo: Richard Bartz                                                        via: Wikipedia

bbsrc
bbsrc:

Meet Drosophila melanogaster - the common fruit fly 
Researchers form University College London are studying the ‘body clock’ of these common crawlies,to help overcome the negative impacts of desynchronised body clocks in humans  - caused by shift work, ageing, or mutation of clock genes.
Life on our planet is embedded in the daily rhythms of light/dark and temperature changes caused by the earths’ rotation. Our internal circadian clock, often referred to as the ‘body clock’, creates the internal rhythm which tells our bodies when to sleep and regulates many other physiological processes. The clock enables us to anticipate environmental changes and adapt our physiology and behaviour to the local time in our external world. This synchronization between internal and external time is important for the fitness and well-being of all organisms, ranging from bacteria to humans.
BBSRC-funded Ralf Stanewsky and his team study the genetic, molecular, and neuronal mechanisms of how these environmental signals – such as daily light and temperature changes – affect the circadian clock of the fruit fly.They hope to identify general principles of circadian clock synchronization, so that these features can be adapted and used to protect against adverse health linked to disrupted body clocks.
Image from Ralf Stanewsky at University College London
Read more at: http://bit.ly/1lMFugo
For more Drosophila related news visit: http://bit.ly/1hDqIDz

bbsrc:

Meet Drosophila melanogaster - the common fruit fly 

Researchers form University College London are studying the ‘body clock’ of these common crawlies,to help overcome the negative impacts of desynchronised body clocks in humans  - caused by shift work, ageing, or mutation of clock genes.

Life on our planet is embedded in the daily rhythms of light/dark and temperature changes caused by the earths’ rotation. Our internal circadian clock, often referred to as the ‘body clock’, creates the internal rhythm which tells our bodies when to sleep and regulates many other physiological processes. The clock enables us to anticipate environmental changes and adapt our physiology and behaviour to the local time in our external world. This synchronization between internal and external time is important for the fitness and well-being of all organisms, ranging from bacteria to humans.

BBSRC-funded Ralf Stanewsky and his team study the genetic, molecular, and neuronal mechanisms of how these environmental signals – such as daily light and temperature changes – affect the circadian clock of the fruit fly.They hope to identify general principles of circadian clock synchronization, so that these features can be adapted and used to protect against adverse health linked to disrupted body clocks.

Image from Ralf Stanewsky at University College London

Read more at: http://bit.ly/1lMFugo

For more Drosophila related news visit: http://bit.ly/1hDqIDz

Lovebugs  (Plecia nearctica) 
… are a type of march fly (not a true but, but indeed a fly, despite the common name), found in the southeast US and parts of Central America. 
They get their common name from their mating behavior - pairs remained coupled for up to days at a time during copulation. Males are smaller than females, but have larger eyes that perhaps help them better locate a mate. 
The adults emerge in large flights in late spring and late summer, which may number hundreds of thousands over the course of a few weeks, though individuals only live for a few days each. These swarms often occur in roadside habitats, becoming a nuisance to motorists when they hit the windshield. 
Adults feed on nectar during their brief lifespan; the larvae feed on decaying vegetation.photo by Florida Fish and Wildlife (MyFWCmedia) on Flickr
(via: Peterson Field Guides)

Lovebugs (Plecia nearctica)

… are a type of march fly (not a true but, but indeed a fly, despite the common name), found in the southeast US and parts of Central America.

They get their common name from their mating behavior - pairs remained coupled for up to days at a time during copulation. Males are smaller than females, but have larger eyes that perhaps help them better locate a mate.

The adults emerge in large flights in late spring and late summer, which may number hundreds of thousands over the course of a few weeks, though individuals only live for a few days each. These swarms often occur in roadside habitats, becoming a nuisance to motorists when they hit the windshield.

Adults feed on nectar during their brief lifespan; the larvae feed on decaying vegetation.

photo by Florida Fish and Wildlife (MyFWCmedia) on Flickr

(via: Peterson Field Guides)

astronomy-to-zoology
astronomy-to-zoology:

Hyperechia nigrita
…is a species of robber fly (Asilidae) that occurs throughout Central Africa. Like other robber flies this species is a mimic of bees, with it sporting a coloration similar to Carpenter bees of the genus Xylocopa. It likely uses this coloration to allow its self to get closer to its prey, which most likely consists mainly of bees and other insects, which are taken in flight.
Classification
Animalia-Arthropoda-Insecta-Diptera-Asilidae-Hyperchia-H. nigrita
Image: Bernhard Jacobi

astronomy-to-zoology:

Hyperechia nigrita

…is a species of robber fly (Asilidae) that occurs throughout Central Africa. Like other robber flies this species is a mimic of bees, with it sporting a coloration similar to Carpenter bees of the genus Xylocopa. It likely uses this coloration to allow its self to get closer to its prey, which most likely consists mainly of bees and other insects, which are taken in flight.

Classification

Animalia-Arthropoda-Insecta-Diptera-Asilidae-Hyperchia-H. nigrita

Image: Bernhard Jacobi

Fly ID - California, USA :
Saw this little fly on my orange peel in Burbank, California (southern) when I startled him he “flexed” his wings and they turned horizontally and he had a fuzzy bottom. He wasn’t very timid and he was a little smaller than the average fly… Any idea what he could be?
Paxon:
Oh, I have some idea :) It’s a Mediterranean Fruit Fly aka Medfly (Ceratitis capitata). As the name would suggest, it’s originally from the area around the Mediterranean, but has been introduced into the United States (as well as other parts of the world).
http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/accounts/Ceratitis_capitata
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ceratitis_capitata
http://entnemdept.ufl.edu/creatures/fruit/mediterranean_fruit_fly.htm

Fly ID - California, USA :

Saw this little fly on my orange peel in Burbank, California (southern) when I startled him he “flexed” his wings and they turned horizontally and he had a fuzzy bottom. He wasn’t very timid and he was a little smaller than the average fly… Any idea what he could be?

Paxon:

Oh, I have some idea :) It’s a Mediterranean Fruit Fly aka Medfly (Ceratitis capitata). As the name would suggest, it’s originally from the area around the Mediterranean, but has been introduced into the United States (as well as other parts of the world).

http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/accounts/Ceratitis_capitata

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ceratitis_capitata

http://entnemdept.ufl.edu/creatures/fruit/mediterranean_fruit_fly.htm

astronomy-to-zoology

astronomy-to-zoology:

Southern Bee Killer (Mallophora orcina)

…a species bumblebee mimicking robber fly that is native to the eastern United States. Like other robber flies this species is an active predator and will prey on bees, wasps, and other insects which are usually caught mid-flight. After the prey is caught the fly will consume it by sucking its insides out!

Classification

Animalia-Arthropoda-Insecta-Diptera-Asiloidea-Asilidae-Asilinae-Mallophora-M. orcina

Images: Patrick Lynch and The MrLiZarD

astronomy-to-zoology

astronomy-to-zoology:

Spilomyia fusca

…is a species of wasp-mimicking syrphid fly that occurs in North America from Minnesota to Nova Scotia, south to Georgia. As previously mentioned S.fusca is a wasp-mimic and mimics the aggressive Bald-faced Hornet (D.maculata) likely to avoid predation from other predators. S.fusca is mainly active from June through September and is often seen visiting Parsnip (P.satvia), Goldenrod (Solidago sp.) and Virgin’s Bower (C.virginiana) where it will feed on their pollen and nectar.

Classification

Animalia-Arthropoda-Insecta-Diptera-Aschiza-Sryphidae-Eristalinae-Milesiini-Milesiina-Spilomyia-S.fusca

Images: mattbpics and Jim Webber