Compost Flies

Our compost pile occupies a corner of our back yard garden. As most of the yard clippings and fallen leaves go to the city compost, our compost takes the organic waste we have from the kitchen, so a lot of coffee grounds and peelings of vegetables and fruit. Even at this small scale, the compost provides food and shelter for a lot of insects. Quite a variety of fly larvae take advantage of the decaying food. And today, when emptying the compost bucket, I found an impressive bounty of soldier flies. Long-legged, green-accentuated, sleek-bodied, these flies were flying pretty much nonstop just above the surface of the compost pile. Like most insect swarms, their movement was rather mesmerizing to watch.

The following quote comes from a short note in the journal Psyche by Philip Rau, author (along with his wife Nellie) of Wasp Studies Afield (1918). Here are a few passages in summation of our compost fly, in Rau’s characteristic flouncy style, written around 1930, in or near Kirkwood, Missouri:

“…these attractive greenish-colored flies were seen hovering in courtship dance above garbage heaps on the rear of a lot… To say that they dance incessantly is not wholly true for individuals often leave the throng to rest on a tin-can or bottle or cantaloupe skin… indeed, it’s a pretty sight to see a flock of these flies moving in a horizontal plane in more-or-less irregular circles and in figure eights just an inch or two above the mass of multi-colored refuse.”

Publicado por scottking scottking, 21 de julho de 2017, 04:16 AM

Observações

Fotos / Sons

Observador

scottking

Data

Julho 20, 2017 11:50 AM CDT

Descrição

Compost Fly
at back yard compost pile
Northfield, Minnesota

Fotos / Sons

Observador

scottking

Data

Julho 20, 2017 11:42 AM CDT

Descrição

Two-spotted Bumble Bee
on St John's Wort
back yard
Northfield, Minnesota

Fotos / Sons

Observador

scottking

Data

Julho 20, 2017 11:51 AM CDT

Descrição

Common Compost Fly
on Yellow Wood Sorrel
back yard
Northfield, Minnesota

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