I have been going to an event called Day of Insects for several years now, and I just love it. Some years I have participated as a speaker, and this year is one of those years. I am talking about “Charismatic Flies.” Those are flies that are unusual or attractive or have some other characteristic that sets them apart from other living things.
I sorted through my photos and found some very good ones. Here are a few that I also find to be charismatic, but that did not quite make the cut.
This is a deer fly in the Crysops genus. I am not sure of the function of the spectacular eyes.
These crane flies, Gnophomyia tristissima, are mating. See the yellow dots on each side of the lower fly, and on the right side of the upper? Those are vestigial wings called “halteres”. All flies have them. When I saw these flies mating, the halteres were moving up and down slowly–maybe once per second, and since they are bright yellow they were a very visible, spectacular display.
This is a green long-legged fly, Condylostylus. They are quite common in Iowa and we seem to have several species.
This is a syrphid fly, maybe Ocyptamus. They might be found here in Iowa but they are not common. I found this one in Alabama.
Another one from Alabama is this Diogmites robber fly.
This bee-like robber fly, Laperia sp. was photographed in Minnesota.
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but I find these creatures to be particularly attractive.