Tag Archives: Flies

A mantis buffet

At Upolu Airport, where I go walking a lot, there’s a mock orange hedge with a passion vine running through it. I check this hedge to see what’s happening on it and lately, it’s been overrun by flies. I don’t know why this is, but I wasn’t surprised when I noticed two praying mantises stationed in the hedge. They were having a field day.

The flies would flit around as flies do, but when one settled, a mantis would strike. Their success rate was quite high, but the flies were easy targets. The safest place to be was on one of the mantises, but that wasn’t a long term solution.

The scene remained the same over three or four days, and then, though the flies were still around, the mantises disappeared. I guess that’s understandable. I mean, how many flies do you think you could eat before you’d start looking for something different?

Top of the line fly

I saw this green bottle fly perched on top of a washing line. Every time I pointed my camera its way it would rotate to the other side of the line. We played this game for a little while before I was able to snap a couple of shots with the fly still in the picture. This was one of them.

Posted in response to Becky’s April Squares challenge theme of ‘Top.’ See more responses here.

Sheep Bot Fly

The sheep bot fly (Oestrus ovis) is also known as the sheep nose bot fly or sheep nostril fly. That’s because larval stages of this fly move into the nasal passages of sheep and goats. So not only is it good looking, but it also resides in the best of neighborhoods.

I like how, in the top image, the fly appears to be bigger than the fair-sized town of Waimea, on the map, though it’s actually about half-an-inch long. Then, in the lower image, the large eye casts a quizzical look.

There were no sheep for miles where these photos were taken, but there’s no shortage of goats in the vicinity, so that probably accounts for the presence of the fly.

Allograpta obliqua hoverfly

Allograpta obliqua hoverfly

I saw this hoverfly on a mamane flower near the top of Pu’u Wa’awa’a, which is one of my favorite places to hike. At first I thought it was a wasp or bee, which is what I’m supposed to think. Mimicking these insects may afford the hoverfly some protection from predators.

Allograpta obliqua is considered a beneficial insect since its larvae feed on aphids.

Many thanks to Daniel at whatsthatbug.com for help with the identification.

Fruit flies on a mango

Fruit Flies feed on a mango

This week’s posts are in response to the WordPress photo challenge on the theme of ‘transient.’

This little scene could be considered transient on three counts. First is the fact that this is a mango that has fallen from the tree. In the life cycle of a mango, it’s a very short interval between ripening on the tree and rotting on the ground. Second, this mango has clearly been chewed over by one of the transient wild pigs that pass through from time to time, more so during mango season. And third, these fruit flies won’t be around long either, having a lifespan in the region of 30 days.

This fruit fly, also called the vinegar fly, is probably Zaprionus ghesquierei, an invasive species known to have reached Hawaii. Zaprionus indianus also looks like this, but hasn’t been seen in Hawaii yet, as far as I know.

Banana stalk flies mating

Banana stalk flies mating on the spadix of an Anthurium schlechtendalii
This is a pair of banana stalk flies (Telostylinus lineolatus) mating on a …wait minute, that’s not a banana stalk. In fact it’s the spadix of an Anthurium schlechtendalii or Pheasant’s tail.

I had to hunt around a bit to identify the insect, but found useful information at whatsthatbug.com. One thing I liked was where it stated, “With enormous eyes, this tiny, tropical, stilt-legged fly maintains a confident distance from human approach, by swiftly running around the blind-side of whatever surface it is on.” This made me laugh because that was EXACTLY what this pair did when I tried to photograph them.