Bee Flies Insect The large, or common bee fly, Bombylius major, can be found across the Northern Hemisphere. Its long, stilletolik proboscis is perfectly adapted for probing into long-tubed flowers. Body length 0.4-0.5 inches (9-12 mm).
- Common name: Bee flies
- Family: Bombyliidae
- Suborder: Brachycera
- Order: Diptera
- Class /Subphylum:Insecta Hexapoda
- Number of species: 3,000 (800 U.S.)
- Size:From about 0.06 in (1.5 mm) to 0.8 in (20 mm)
Key features:Many rather plump and hairy, may be mistaken for bees, giving them their common name; many have a long, slim proboscis; wings often have darker patterns or spots
Habits: May be found feeding at flowers or sitting around on the ground, rocks, or other surfaces; flower feeders may hover as they take nectar, usually seen singly, larvae often found in the nests of solitary bees or wasps
Breeding:Courtship occurs in some species, sometimes in leks; after mating, females seek out burrows of their host insects into which to drop their eggs
Diet:Adults feed on nectar, larvae parasitic or predaceous, mainly on larval solitary bees and wasps, some feed on egg pods of Orthoptera
Habitat: Have a preference for dry habitats such as desert and semidesert, with just a few in more moist conditions
Distribution: Worldwide where suitable habitats exist.