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Photo#68800
Bee killer. Is it a predatory fly? - Mallophora fautrix

Bee killer. Is it a predatory fly? - Mallophora fautrix
Del Mar, San Diego County, California, USA
August 5, 2006
Size: 20mm
My kids discovered this in our garden today. First it looked like an odd shaped bumblebee but on closer look it turned out to be a large fly carrying and possibly eating what looks to be a honeybee.
Can somebody help me identify this guy and tell me about its predatory habits? Thank you!

Images of this individual: tag all
Bee killer. Is it a predatory fly? - Mallophora fautrix Bee killer. Is it a predatory fly? - Mallophora fautrix

Moved
Moved from Bee Killers.

Robber
This is one of the bee mimic robber flies. In the genus Mallophora. A very different group from the Laphria. Note the very fine antenna tips. Compare this to the Laphria shots here.

In California there is only one member in this genus and it is Mallophora fautrix. Yours has a large bee kill. And they often take bees and wasps in flight after resting quietly near flower haunts.

Asilid Fly (Asilidae)
Sucks the life blood out of its prey.

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