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Yellow Fly - Copestylum sexmaculatum

Yellow Fly - Copestylum sexmaculatum
Desoto, Dallas County, Texas, USA
July 27, 2009
I've added an image of the underside--I never know what angle might be the key!

Images of this individual: tag all
Yellow Fly - Copestylum sexmaculatum - male Yellow Fly - Copestylum sexmaculatum - male Yellow Fly - Copestylum sexmaculatum - male Yellow Fly - Copestylum sexmaculatum

I'm so glad we have this photo!
The fly's cousin landed at Bug Guide today, some years later:

I'm glad too!
To quote Thomas the Tank Engine, it's good to be a "very useful engine." (Only parents or grandparents of toddlers will appreciate that statement!)

Moved from Frass.

I completely appreciate your attempt to be highly selective in which images to keep in the guide, but I'm going to go ahead and rescue this one (again!). With so few identified images of this species, I think we should hang on to it -- plus it's a good view of the characteristic Copestylum face.

Agreed on all counts.


Moved from Syrphid Flies.

Moved from Frass.

I think you'd be safe putting them at tribe-level (Volucellini) -- given Ron and Eric's ID comments -- but, I've moved them to Syrphidae because there are a number of images already there awaiting further expert review.

Moved from Flies.

Vote for "unfrassing" these...
I would definitely recommend keeping these images for the sake of more comments on possible ID and also because (as Ron noted) this specimen seems very lightly marked, and thus of some interest, even a species ID is unattainable.

I just hate to add to the clutter...
Where shall I park them?

Re: What angle?
This fly really threw me off, mostly because of its lightness. The photos you supplied - angles and quality - would normally make for an easy ID. I do think Eric is right - Copestylum would have been my guess, but I avoided making one here.

Here's a bit more detail:
For a fly, first shot to lock in is straight down from the top. (You want to show any pattern on the body, plus wing veins.) One particular wing vein IDs a fly as a syrphid. (Wing veins on yours are so light to be nearly indistinguishable.) Side views are often helpful, particularly with some syrphids where the absence or presence of a margin can make a difference. On a few flies, a rear view such as your second shot can come in handy. Faces can also be important, particularly with Copestylum.

I try to get as many angles as possible--but you know how it is when the fly has it's own opinions! My IDs are rarely made on technicalities--only the generalizations--but I came to the same conclusion. Thanks again!

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