white-spotted pond fly

(Sericomyia lata)

               
Conservation Status

IUCN Red List

not listed

white-spotted pond fly

 

NatureServe

not listed

Minnesota

not listed

Occurrence

 

Flight/Season

 

Habitat

 

Size

Total Length:

         
         
         
         
          Photo by Alfredo Colon

Identification

This is a robust, medium-sized, long hoverfly. It is somewhat bee-like in appearance. It is found across southern Canada and in the United States from New England to Minnesota.

The thorax is slightly wider than long. It is black tinged with bronze, shiny, and unmarked. The plate between the abdomen and thorax (scutellum) is large, convex, and colored like the thorax. The thorax and scutellum have a fringe of long pale hairs.

The abdomen is oval and slightly longer than wide. It is black with pairs yellow marks on the second, third, and fourth segments. The yellow marks do not touch the lateral margin. The marks on the second abdominal segment are large and nearly round. Those on the third segment are smaller and separated in the middle, effectively two spots on each side. The marks on the fourth segment are even smaller, kidney-shaped, and placed at an oblique angle. The tip of the abdomen is sometimes reddish.

The wings are clear. The second cell on the leading edge of each wing toward the tip (pterostigma) is relatively broad and tinted brown. It does not have a cross vein. The marginal cell (R1) is open.

The legs do not have spurs. The third leg segment (femur) is not thickened.

The face is short, projecting less than half the length of the compound eye below the compound eye. It is entirely yellow and does not have a black vertical stripe down the middle. There are two large compound eyes and three very small simple eyes (ocelli). The compound eyes are bare, without a covering of hairs. On the male they meet at the top of the head. On the female they do not. The ocelli are arranged in a small triangle at the top of the head. The antennae are short, no more than one-third the length of the face. There is a long bristle (arista) on the third segment of each antenna. It is about one and a half times as long as the antenna and has many fine filaments giving it a feathery appearance (plumose).

 
Similar
Species

 


Larval Food

Larvae filter pond water of decaying organic debris, obtaining nourishment from microorganisms.

 
Adult Food

 

 
Life Cycle

 

 
Behavior

 


Distribution Distribution Map  

Sources: 24, 29, 30.


Comments

 


Taxonomy

Order:

Diptera (gnats, mosquitoes, true flies)

 

Suborder:

Brachycera (circular-seamed flies, mouches muscoïdes, muscoid flies, short-horned flies)

 

Infraorder:

Muscomorpha

  no rank:

Eremoneura

  no rank:

Cyclorrhapha (circular-seamed flies)

 

Section:

Aschiza

 

Superfamily:

Syrphoidea

 

Family:

Syrphidae (hover flies)

 

Subfamily:

Eristalinae

 

Tribe:

Eristalini

 

Subtribe:

Sericomyiina

 

Genus:

Sericomyia

 

Subgenus:

Sericomyia

 
Synonyms

Condidea lata

 
Common
Names

white-spotted pond fly


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glossary

Arista

A large bristle on the upper side of the third segment of the antenna of a fly.

 

Femur

On insects and arachnids, the third, largest, most robust segment of the leg, coming immediately before the tibia. On humans, the thigh bone.

 

Ocellus

Simple eye; an eye with a single lens. Plural: ocelli.

 

Pterostigma

In Odonata and Hymenoptera, the dark, blood-filled second cell at the leading edge of each wing toward the tip. It is heaver than adjacent, similar sized areas and is thought to dampen wing vibrations and signal mates. [= stigma. More precise than stigma but less often used, even by entomologists.]

 

Scutellum

The exoskeletal plate covering the rearward (posterior) part of the middle segment of the thorax in some insects. In Coleoptera, Hemiptera, and Homoptera, the dorsal, often triangular plate behind the pronotum and between the bases of the front wings. In Diptera, the exoskeletal plate between the abdomen and the thorax.

 

 

 

 

 

       

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Alfredo Colon


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Alfredo Colon
6/8/2018

Location: Woodbury, MN

white-spotted pond fly


     
     
 

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