Soldier Fly (Sargus fasciatus)

This large, strikingly-colored fly (metallic red/purple thorax, striped abdomen, white “racing” stripe and white spot between the eyes) is about 1 cm long. It’s one of many species of soldier flies, in the family Stratiomyidae.

I wish I could say more about it, but here is the complete Wikipedia entry (other flies in the family have entries of similar length): “Sargus fasciatus is a species of soldier fly in the family Stratiomyidae.”

It may either drink nectar from flowers or possibly not feed at all as an adult. This soldier fly does not bite and is not dangerous to humans, despite the intimidating “soldier fly” name. You can tell this individual is female, because the eyes don’t touch in the middle. It’s visually differentiated from a couple of veeeeeery similar species (S. bipunctatus, S. decorus) by the fact that the spot between the eyes is a large, single spot and not a pair of smaller white spots. Aaaand that’s what I’ve got. Pity, this fly is really beautiful.

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