Mintho rufiventris #2

Mintho rufiventris

Mintho rufiventris

Photographs of Mintho rufiventris taken September 2016, rear garden, Staffordshire. © Pete Hillman 2016. Camera used Nikon D7200, with Sigma 105mm macro lens.

Mintho rufiventris

This is a relatively small and slender tachnid fly which I discovered on a step. A dark, bristly species with distinctive red markings on the sides of  its abdomen, and a pale grey median line. Length 8 to 11mm.

The adults feed on pollen and nectar, and the larvae is mainly a parasite of Pyralidae moth caterpillars. The female lays eggs on the moth larvae, and when they hatch the resulting maggots feed on the caterpillars.

Seen May to September in various habitats. Nationally scarce, mainy found in southeast England, gradually spreading north.

Photographs taken June 2016, rear garden, Staffordshire.