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Bombylius discolor Mikan, 1796

Bombylius discolor-Meise.jpg <i><b>Calvia quatuordecimguttata</b></i>||<img src=./_datas/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/i/uploads/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/2011/01/26/20110126002339-4a653ba7-th.jpg>Thumbnails<i><b>Calvia quatuordecimguttata</b></i>||<img src=./_datas/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/i/uploads/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/2011/01/26/20110126002339-4a653ba7-th.jpg>Thumbnails<i><b>Calvia quatuordecimguttata</b></i>||<img src=./_datas/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/i/uploads/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/2011/01/26/20110126002339-4a653ba7-th.jpg>Thumbnails<i><b>Calvia quatuordecimguttata</b></i>||<img src=./_datas/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/i/uploads/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/2011/01/26/20110126002339-4a653ba7-th.jpg>Thumbnails<i><b>Calvia quatuordecimguttata</b></i>||<img src=./_datas/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/i/uploads/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/2011/01/26/20110126002339-4a653ba7-th.jpg>Thumbnails<i><b>Calvia quatuordecimguttata</b></i>||<img src=./_datas/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/i/uploads/t/6/y/t6ynvw9sux/2011/01/26/20110126002339-4a653ba7-th.jpg>Thumbnails

Bombylius discolor Mikan, 1796
Common names: Dotted Bee-Fly [En], Bombyle bicolore [Fr]

Meise, BRABANT โ— Belgium

Description: This scarce species is highly distinctive, with brown spots on the wings and black hairs at the end of the abdomen. Its length (excluding proboscis) is 10-16mm.

Biology: Adult bee-flies are 'heralds of spring', emerging during the first warm days of March and April. They can be seen hovering around flowers, and are somewhat reminiscent of humming birds.
Gravid females coat their eggs in sand and then flick these at suitable solitary bee nests whilst hovering. The larvae seek out the burrows of their hosts, and develop as parasites on the exterior surface of the host. It is not known where this species pupates. The precise hosts of dotted bee-fly larvae are not known, although it is believed that bees of the genus Andrena are likely candidates, in particular, the mining bees Andrena flavipes and Andrena cineraria.

Protection Status: This species declined following the catastrophic crash in populations of solitary bees during the 1960s and 1970s; this was the result of the widespread intensification of agriculture, which reduced the number of suitable nest sites, and the availability of suitable flowers for host bees. In Great Britain this species is classified as Nationally Scarce.


References :
Arkive.org
Van Veen M., Bombylius key
Ismay, J. W., 1999.
UK Biodiversity Action Plan, A review of the ecology and distribution of Bombylius discolor Mikan (Diptera, Bombyliidae). English Nature Research report number 309.



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