Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Daylight robbery

This stunning fly is one of several species of Robber flies (Family Asilidae) that are active at the moment around our home. Robber flies are active hunters that catch prey in flight, or pluck it from foliage. They have huge eyes, excellent vision and a capacity to turn their heads rapidly to keep track of prey or threats. They feed through a large proboscis which is driven into their prey to extract its body fluids. Some species are nocturnal and we have observed them feeding on large cockroaches, but the species below is active by day. Robber flies will often fly short distances and return to the same area to wait and watch for potential prey, making them reasonably easy to observe and photograph.

This Robber fly is feeding upon a blowfly

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