Help – flying insects

May 10, 2008

Categories: Bulb Fly, Diseases and Pests

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Help – flying insects

How can I tell a narcissus fly from a honey bee, short of seeing if it will sting me?  There is a swarm (well, hundreds) of honeybee size insects flying low and crawling on the ground over part of my main daffodil bed, mostly over freshly dug dirt.  They look and sound like honeybees, so I’m reluctant to spray them.

My carefully killed specimen is just over 1/2 inch (about 1.3 cm), has long cute curved antenna, typical wasp waist and a long proboscis.  It looks leaner than the photos of the large bulb fly and it’s eyes don’t look as large.  It’s predominantly black with yellow fuzz on its thorax (or what I think is its thorax – I’m a chem eng!)

There’s at least one mating pair crawling around on the ground – the female is about twice the size of the male and amber colored.

I’m in WV – the very last twin sisters are blooming and most of the daff foliage is still green and erect.  It’s sunny and in the 60’s, the first warm dry day after some cool wet weather.

Do I ignore environmental concerns and fog the area with hornet killing spray, or live and let live?

Kathleen Simpson

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