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Black Devils

Black Devils
Photo Information
Copyright: Grzegorz Wieczorek (red45) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2636 W: 74 N: 9091] (31094)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2009-08
Categories: Insects
Camera: Canon EOS 400D, Tokina AT-X M100 Pro D 1:1
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Robber flies (Diptera: Asilidae) of Europe, Dipterans (except Hover flies) of Europe-3 [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2009-08-04 14:28
Viewed: 3768
Points: 12
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
After few posts with nice and boring butterflies more action today. Dasypogon diadema called also Black devil is one of our biggest robber flies. I took these two pictures in last few days. On left side female with prey, on right side black male. Both taken in Botanic Garden.

Dasypogon diadema Fabricius, 1781
Family: Asilidae - robber flies

Adults are large (about 15 mm) and sexually dimorphic; males have black abdomen and blackish wings, and females have black abdomen with red markings and brownish wings and are usually larger.

The species occurs in Central and Southern Europe in open, dry, and sandy areas such as steppes, partly eroded hill slopes, sandy hollows, weedy grass plots, dunes, dry meadows, pastures, and olive groves.

Males continuously look for females. Females are more territorial, remaining longer at their foraging positions perched upwards on stems, or sometimes on the ground. They only fly if they see potential prey or if males disturb them. During periods of inactivity, they hang on stems of flowers and grasses or under leaves.

Larvae feed on larvae of scarab beetles (order Coleoptera, family Scarabeidae), and adults mostly on hymenopterans, including honey bees (Apis mellifera). With their long, thin legs, the strong spur at the apex of the foretibiae, and long proboscis, they are well adapted for subduing wasps and bees without being stung. After catching a prey in flight, they look for an appropriate perching site before sucking the prey's contents.

Mating is initiated after a short struggle, when the male grasps the female's ovipositor with his genital claspers. Final mating position is end-to-end. The female then flies with the male in copula looking for a suitable place to land. After mating, the female lays the eggs in clutches in the soil, protected inside sand cocoons. The four larval instars and the pupa live in the soil.


See also very interesting site there:

And last but not least - I founded very promissing article about eating tiger beetle by Dasypogon diadema. I bet you know author :-)


Vinster, thor68, parasbhalla, goldyrs, Hormon_Manyer has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

Hi Grzegorz
Excellent capture of the male and female of this species. Sharp details in both images and very good notes - interesting reading!
Kind Regards

Good Morning, Grzegorz!

Today you came up with not only a single shot but two wonderful shots (2-in-1) with great details!
Each single shot seems to tell its own story. The female having its lunch time is just well shown and sharpness in both the cases is wonderfully controlled. However the male with black color is well detailed except for its thorax and abdomen part. The head the legs are well detailed.
Overall, a wonderful collage showing both sexes in a single post!

thanks and regards,
Paras Bhalla

  • Great 
  • nagraj Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1618 W: 106 N: 3208] (15166)
  • [2009-08-05 5:57]

Good to see both sexes of this species, robber flies. tfs.

A superb collage, Grzegorz! The note is also very detailed and informative!

Czesc Grzesiu
Widze ze dotarles do artykulu Radka. Fajne fotki, mozna porownac chlopca i dzieczynke. Obie plcie to oczywiscie mordercy ;-) Takie podgladanie lowikow przy polowaniu to fajna zabawa i jak widac przynosi tez wymierne efekty w postaci zdjec

hello Grzegorz
super collage with great details and beautiful colours
greeting lou

Czesc Grzeg,

Nice pair of insect macros. Great sharpness and colors on each, I'm especially impressed by the different green tones. :) Great work. Tfs both.

I'm very happy some of Your insect photos were published in a book. You absolutely deserved this honour.

Have a nice WE, best wishes, László

PS: hm, "grzyby" link is still empty on Your website...

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