October 15th, 2011 | by Dave Ingram | 1 Comment
Published in Backyard Garden, Flies, Invertebrates
Tags: British Columbia, Courtenay, Eristalis dimidiata, Gardening, Hoverflies, Syrphus sp., Toxomerus occidentalis, Vancouver Island
I’ve spent some time wandering through BugGuide.Net trying to figure out some of the backyard flies that I’ve photographed over the last couple of weeks in our garden in Courtenay, British Columbia. I think that I’m starting to narrow a few of them down and I’ve tentatively identified them to species. However, I’ll be the first to admit that I’m no fly guy and the possibility of mis-identification from using images found on the internet is pretty high.
If you’ve got a better background than I do with these species, please leave a comment so that I can correct any of my errors!
If you’ve stumbled upon this page looking for information about a fly you’ve seen, take that as a disclaimer – it is really difficult to be 100% sure of the identification of these backyard flies. Make sure that you consider several different sources before coming to a conclusion. Talking to an expert would probably be a good idea …
I feel pretty confident naming these Toxomerus occidentalis – but I could be wrong …
I featured this fly on a previous post as “Unknown Fly #3” but think that I’ve got it down to genus as Syrphus. Beyond that, I’m not too sure. BugGuide.Net lists two species of Syrphus but a more comprehensive list at the University of Alberta Entomology Collection refers to five very similar looking flies. I’m happy to leave this one at the genus level!
I’m reasonably confident that this is another species of hoverfly, Eristalis dimidiata. It looks very different from the other flies in this post and from other hoverflies that I’ve seen in our garden like E. arbustorum. That being said …. I feel good about the genus here, but could be wrong about the species.
Flies are definitely a lot more fascinating that I originally thought. And they’re worth watching for their beauty as well!