Hoverfly (Epistrophe nitidicollis)

Hoverflies are a real problem to identify, especially these wasp mimics. I am lucky enough to have the definitive guide to hoverflies as I have a real fondness for them (it takes all sorts!) and there are some thirty or so similar species.

This species is, as far as I can tell from the yellow and black markings on the thorax Epistrophe nitidicollis.

This specimen was by a woodland ride in Thorncome Wood near Hardy's Cottage, Bockhampton sat on a tree leaf and. lo and behold, my book says that woodland rides and coppice glades in May provide the best conditions for seeing them.

This is a fairly local species in the south, flies from April to August but peaks in May. I saw several of them in quite a small area.

What was interesting is that they can go from stationary in to flight in an instant and then return to almost the same spot it left just a few seconds later.

This is a male as the eyes are joined together, in female flies there is a gap between the eyes.

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