Brooklyn Bridge Park

Painted skimmer, Libellula semifascianata. (Oh, come now, much more than just semi fascianata!)A ladybug larva demolishing aphids. Perhaps the seven spotted, Coccinella septempunctata. Twice or more as big as the insects below, and a little more lumbering, hence the best shot of the post! This is an Eastern carpenter bee, Xylocopa virginica, working the swamp milkweed, Asclepias incarnata, like the next two:Wasp-like, especially with that thread-waist, and rather similar to the potter wasps, but this is actually a thick-headed fly, Physoccephala tibialis, a parasitoid whose larvae develop inside the bodies of bumble bees. Parasitoids terminate their hosts. The adults themselves are gentle vegetarians, supping on nectar and pollen.I didn’t post anything for National Pollinator Week this year; luckily, the pollinators work all through the summer. This looks like a leaf-cutter bee, in the family Megachilidae.A flower fly of some kind, family Syrphidae. Note those the big eyes, and the wings: the flies, order Diptera, have a single pair of wings, bees/wasps/ants (Hymenoptera) have two pair of wings that interlock velcro-like in flight: see the leaf-cutter bee above and note how much larger the right “wing” looks — it’s actually two wings merged together.

1 Response to “Brooklyn Bridge Park”


  1. 1 Nora charters July 7, 2011 at 9:03 pm

    Wow, what a great set of pictures. So neat to learn that what I thought were bees are actually flies!


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