Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada

Genus Mallota

Fly [Mallota?] ID Request - Mallota posticata Bee mimic (Mallota) - Mallota mississippensis - female Syrphid - Mallota posticata Syrhpidae  ? - Mallota posticata Eristalis sp.? - Mallota posticata Syrphid - Mallota bautias?? - Mallota bautias Bee Mimic - Some type of fly - Mallota bautias - female Mallota sp.? - Mallota sackeni
Classification
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Diptera (Flies)
No Taxon ("Aschiza")
Family Syrphidae (Syrphid Flies)
Subfamily Eristalinae
Tribe Eristalini
Subtribe Helophilina
Genus Mallota
Other Common Names
Bee-like Hover Fly
Explanation of Names
Mallota Meigen 1822
Greek mallos 'woolly'(1)
Numbers
8 spp. in our area
Size
11-19 mm
Identification
Adults are bumblebee mimics with very large hind femora; larvae with a tube-like breathing siphon at the rear end. Adults may be told from the superficially similar Merodon by the intersection of the M1 and R4+5 veins, which is a right angle in Merodon but a quite acute angle close to the wing edge in Mallota.
Mallota wing Merodon wing
Range
throughout US & much of so. Canada(2)
Habitat
deciduous forests and edges; adults visit flowers
Season
Spring to fall: Apr-Jun, Aug-Oct (M. posticata in NC); May-Jun (M. posticata in OK, MN); Apr-Jul in OK(3), May-Jul in ON(4)(5)
Food
larvae are deposit feeders in water-filled tree holes
Remarks
Males show hilltopping behavior, i.e. congregate in open areas on prominent features (hilltops, escarpments, clifftops...) and wait for females to arrive
See Also
Other bumblebee-like hoverflies: Merodon, some Eristalis, Volucella, and Criorhina.
Bumblebees Bombus and bee-mimic robber flies (Laphria, Mallophora)
Internet References
Works Cited
1.Composition of scientific words
Brown R.W. 1956. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, DC. 882 pp.
2.Key to the genera of nearctic Syrphidae
Miranda G.F.G, Young A.D., Locke M.M., Marshall S.A., Skevington J.H., Thompson F.C. 2013. Can. J. Arthropod Identification 23: 1-351.
3.Syrphidae of Oklahoma (Diptera)
Shorter D.A., Drew W.A. 1976. Proc. Okla. Acad. Sci. 56: 75-94.
4.Insects of North Carolina
C.S. Brimley. 1938. North Carolina Department of Agriculture.
5.Syrphidae of Ontario