Though most of us think of bees when we think of pollination, there are actually a lot of different types of insects that act as pollinators! One of our favorite groups of pollinating insects is the hoverflies. Some of these flies can do double duty as beneficial insects by acting as natural enemies of pests in their larval stage and as pollinators in their adult stages. This makes them valuable friends of humans! We particularly love their beautiful patterns, mimicking bees so well that they are often mistaken as such. In fact, adult hoverflies have no way to defend themselves from predators (no stinger!) and can only fly away or buzz loudly to pretend they are a bee. These delicate, colorful, helpful flies are well-worthy of our appreciation during National Pollinator Week.
Take a look at Dr. Laura Russo’s photos!