Marmalade fly

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I went on a bug hunt this morning, and found quite a lot of different types on a neglected Hypericum bush at the back of the pear tree bed. Some were too small for me to get decent images, but I’m happy with this shot of a hoverfly – I like its steely iridescent thorax, and the fact that you can just about make out the eye facets.

I think from a quick web search that it’s a Marmalade fly (Episyrphus balteatus). It’s a very common hoverfly which is regarded as useful because its larvae eat aphids; the adults eats pollen and nectar, and are good pollinators. This specimen, which is about 1cm long, is distinguishable as a male by the fact that its eyes touch on top of its head.

Taken (from very close in) with the 31mm extension tube on the 50mm lens. A 100mm macro is edging higher up the wish list!