Friday, August 10, 2007

Cool looking fruit fly but what kind?

This is a common fruit fly in our yard. I see them almost daily on the top rail of the deck or on the deck funiture doing a weird kind of display. It can move each wing independently up and down and will also rotate the wings separately like the guy with those paddles guiding planes on an aircraft carrier or someone signaling with semaphores. The display is quite enchanting though I don't know why it seems to do it when people are around. I don't seem to see another fly nearby so I guess the display is for us.

I don't see them on either the plum, peach, blueberries or tomatoes so I don't know what it eats. The mouth parts seem to be rather large, like a suction cup, with Angelina Jolie lips (first photo, side view) so I would guess it eats by lapping up fruit juices.

The beautiful wing pattern is most interesting and intricate. I tried to look it up using the the patterns below but it seems to be much more baroque than any illustrated.
Wing patterns from the University of Wiconsin Madison news site.

Here's another listing from the University of Maine website. We do have lots of blueberry plants but I don't think the wing pattern is conclusive and I have not seen damaged fruit.

Well, I finally looked it up on the What's that bug website and someone wrote that it could be Delphinia picta, a picture-winged fly. I Googled it and found it on the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences website

Here are more photos from the site.

So "there it is".


Blogger Locust-Eater said...

I dub thee Antus with Wingii

7:01 AM  
Blogger kate said...

When you wrote that it was a Delphinia, I wondered why it didn't feast on Delphiniums too! These are incredible photographs. You made me laugh when you wrote its lips resembled those of A. Jolie!

Happy weekend!

9:36 AM  
Blogger Ki said...

Hi locust-eater. Do you jar the status quo? Isn't that some wingii?


Hi Kate, the name is strange as it doesn't seem descriptive and Greek to boot. I always wanted to photograph them when I first saw some. Yesterday's temperatures were in the 90's and dropped 30 degrees F in an hour or two. I think the bugs were stunned as I was able to photograph many without scaring any away. The have a song about Bette Davis eyes why not about A. Jolie's lips? ;) Good weekend to you too! Thanks for the comment.

10:22 AM  
Blogger DeeMom said...

“I don't know why it seems to do it when people are around. I don't seem to see another fly nearby so I guess the display is for us.”

Guess they only have Wings for YOU! ;)

5:39 PM  
Blogger Digital Flower Pictures said...

I don't go over to 'What's that Bug' because I end up looking at a lot of the pictures. Looks like a cool fly I haven't seen that before. Nice DOF on the photos.

Ki, I saw your comment over on Annie's Blog and wanted to tell you that Blogger always makes me authenticate twice.

6:05 PM  
Blogger Ki said...

You are too funny deemom :) It is a rather curious trait and an endearing one too.


I love looking at bugs too Chris. I only go to the WTB site when I need to look up a weird bug. The photos are almost 100% crops from the Panasonic FX01 camera using the macro function. It hadn't occurred to me that the photos had very good DOF until you pointed it out. Usually that't the lack of DOF is so glaring I notice it immediately.

I notice some Blogger sites require me to input the word verification twice and some others only once. I wonder what the difference is?

7:18 PM  
Blogger MrBrownThumb said...

I've been chasing this one in the garden but haven't caught a photo yet. I had no idea it was a fruit fly... when I finally do catch one at least the ID will be done? :0)

I've had the problem with the word verification and I realize it only happens if I mess up the first time or if I erroneously capitalize or lower case a letter in the word.

And I've always thought that if you had a blogger account you didn't have to do the word. When I reply to comments on my blog I don't need to type in the word but on most other Blogger blogs I do.

8:23 PM  
Blogger Kylee said...

I don't think I've seen this one yet! I'm sure we probably have them though. Cool wings!

9:13 PM  
Blogger Ki said...

Hi Mr. Brown Thumb,
I always wanted to photograph this fly too, ever since I first saw it. This one was a show-off and didn't fly away. The What's that bug site Annie in Austin clued me into, is a good one to ID bugs. When I rely to comments on my blog, the word verif. doesn't show up. but if I comment on others' blogs sometimes I'm required to do the verification once and sometimes twice. Must be the way they've set up the comments layout.

Hi Kylee,

The wings, seen from the back is even more ornate than I thought. Only when I enlarged the photo was I able to see just how elaborate it was. This is a pretty neat little fly. Thanks for the comment.

5:25 PM  
Blogger Ewa said...

wow what a sweet looking fly is this! wings are awesome!
thanks for sharing :)

2:59 PM  
Blogger Ki said...

Aren't the wings something else? Nature is an awesome designer.

The fly also moves the wings up and down independently. It also rotates the wings as if signaling. I guess it's displaying to attract a mate.

7:03 AM  

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