RE: NANFA-L-- What the ______ are these

Hoover, Jan J ERDC-EL-MS (
Sun, 29 Jan 2006 15:49:43 -0600

>>>Patrick posted:
Anyone know, or has anyone seen them before.<<<

Patrick and other Fans of Flies -

A few more comments on rat-tailed maggots:
Adults are called "flower flies" and some are mimics of bees and wasps.
Tails of the larvae are respiratory tubes that function a bit like snorkels
(which must limit the water depths they inhabit).
They usually occur in fish-less habitats but are apparently quite palatable.
Larvae are (or were) readily available from commercial bait dealers in the
north (my wife and I ordered them for the insect shows we used to do).
My own experience has been that many aquatic naturalists have not seen them -
probably because they (the maggots) occur in such transient, shallow, dirty,
or remote (e.g., tree-holes) places that they are not often encountered by
seine- or dipnet-wielding collectors.

By the way - nice pics.

- Jan Hoover
Vicksburg, MS
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