Bee-like Robber Fly - Female  (three photos)
Laphria fernaldi

Laphria fernaldi
I was walking along a trail in the wetlands below Jordanelle Dam in Wasatch County, Utah when I saw what I first
thought was a large Bumble Bee flying out at me from a branch on a tree and then darting back in and perching. 
I thought that was quite unusual behavior for a Bumble Bee so I took a second look.  Carol Davis 7-3-2012

bee-like robber fly
My heart started to race when I saw this insect I'd been looking for FOREVER - a bee-like Robber Fly.  I just went right
up to it and started shooting photos because they are not aggressive. A normal person would have run down the trail
screaming because of  its size and the fact that it looked like a bumble bee. Any time an insect flew near it cruised
 out to attempt to snatch it. I think it was a newby because it wasn't too successful, and it was so freakin' beautiful - no
obvious injuries and just as calm as could be.  Carol Davis, 7-3-2012

face of a robber fly
These bee-like insects are relentless hunters in the insect world and I feel privileged to have finally seen one. The
 face is the dead give-way when deciding whether or not you are looking at a fly or a bee.  You can practice by
checking out the insects visiting your flowers. See if you can tell whether your yellow and black insects are
  bees or flies. You'll be surprised at how many flies are pollinating your flowers.  Check out the male of
this species on my other Laphria page.
Carol Davis, 7-3-2012

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