Black Tailed Bee Fly

Yesterday around the milkweeds I have in the Tank Garden I noticed a lot of buzzing and found what at first I thought were bees.

But, then they didn't really look like a bee.  As they darted from flower to flower they would sometimes stop and hover.  So cool to watch!

And, by the way, do you know how wonderful the blossoms on a milkweed smell?!  I hadn't realized this bonus until Sunday when my second daughter pointed that out to me.  As I took these pictures, the scent was so delightful adding to the fun of watching these busy "bees".

Long legs and long proboscis (tongue)!

With the help of my 16 year old daughter, I was able to identify this as a Black Tailed Bee Fly.

And, look at the bright milkweed bug photobomb!

I'm not thrilled with the milkweed bugs as they eat up the plants and I want the monarch butterflies to feed on them.  I still need to learn more about these Black Tailed Bee Flies.  They kill other bees, not good.  But, do they do good themselves? At least I enjoyed taking pictures of them!

We've had some nice rain at our place, but our tiller has been on the fritz so you know what that means in the vegetable garden. Hopefully, we'll get a chance to get those weeds knocked down again.


  1. Super interesting bug, but as the daughter of a beekeeper, it is very bad if they kill honey bees.

  2. These are awesome pictures, Jill! I have milkweed plants in abundance and simply love to see the monarchs. Haven't noticed these bees though. I'll keep a look out!


  3. I too am enjoying the sweet smell of the milkweed...hoping it will help the uncle(the farmer) thought I was nuts...


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