This is a very common fly, appearing early in the year when it appears in warm days from February and also in late Autumn when it it usually seen sunning on fences and walls. It has a dull brown abdomen with darker transverse blotches, red femora and tibiae (though the front femora is often darkened) and infuscated cross-veins on the wings.It has a reddish tip to the scutellum and to the basal segment of the antennae.
It also has a strong posterodorsal bristle near the base of the hind tibia and the costal edge of the wing bulges out - both these features are typical of the Phaonia genus.
See Identification Aids below for an illustrated guide to identifying this fly.
Other Phaonia species, particularly P. errans and P. fuscata which have similar leg colours.
P. errans has black antennae and 2 post-sutoral acrostichals.
P. fuscata has only 3 post-sutoral dorsocentrals (the other two have 4).
- Presutural acrostichal bristles absent
- Post-suture bristles: 1x acrostichal + 4x dorsocentral
- Front tibia with 1-2 posterior bristles
- Basal antennal segments, scutellum base + legs reddish
- Wing cross-veins darkened
Unless identified by a recognised expert, explain how you identified this species and the identifying features observed.
Various habitats and often seen around habitation, particularly sunning on walls and fences.
It is one of the earliest flies to appear each year, often seen sun-bathing on sunny walls and fences from February and can be seen until the end of October.
Common and widespread in England and Wales.
Very common in Leicestershire and Rutland
Leicestershire & Rutland Map
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Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015