Bombylius: a short film by Mark Williams

The Bee Fly, or Bombylius, is a frequent visitor to the Urquhart Butterfly Garden. Mark Williams created this stunning feature all about this fascinating insect. Thank you to Mark for sharing this delightful video with us!

Bombylius (commonly named the large bee-fly or the dark-edged bee-fly) is a parasitic bee mimic fly. The fly derives its name from its close resemblance to bumblebees and are often mistaken for them. It exhibits a unique flight behavior known as “yawing” and plays a role in general pollination, without preference of flower types. The fly does not bite, sting, or spread disease. However, the fly uses this mimicry of bumblebees to its own advantage, allowing close access to host solitary bee and wasp nests in order to deposit its eggs. After hatching, the larvae find their way into the nests to parasitically feed on the grubs.

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