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Re: [beemonitoring] Re: Are predatory 'bumble-bee mimicks' common? please advise?

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  • Charles Guevara
       Thanks all for fleshing out my delightful first-time encounter with that predatory robber-fly bumble-bee mimic .      Thanks Liz and Jack for the
    Message 1 of 14 , Jun 13, 2012
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         Thanks all for fleshing out my delightful first-time encounter with that predatory robber-fly 'bumble-bee mimic'.
         Thanks Liz and Jack for the mention of 'Batesian mimicry' to enhance my understanding of this 'mimic in my meadows, and orchard'.
         The very reason I noticed this mimic is the relatively large size of it's captured prey organism ( I hope my attached images open in my recent posts?).
      I doubt I was encountering an anomalus prey capture by this mimic. (of course who can say wether it was an anomalus prey capture event?!)  A thoughtful poster did mention in this thread that Bombus possibly might be prey for this genus.
         My thoughts are that the rather accurate simulation of bumblebee flight-forageing style would enhance prey capture...because of prey which are not reactive to Bombus approaches...these insects would not defensively flee from a predatory 'bumblebee mimic'.   Serious fieldwork required to flesh out a statement such as I just made. 
         My personal field observations, and pursuit of this field work will enhance my seasonal outdoor chores , thanks for all the useful comments.
         Thank you Liz and Jack for drawing  my attention to speculations  of dual selective value for a predator ( a predatory insect which blends in with a flowers anatomical structures both has relative defense from it's visual predators...and enhanced efficiency at prey capture of visually keen prey organisms)...my speculations of dual selective value ( Batsian mimicry driver regarding my meadows Eastern Blue birds insectivory...etc. predatory pressures [do bumblebees really have a free pass against predation...or is it so, as one poster to this thread speculated, these bumblebee-mimics' may include Bombus in their range of prey organisms?]...Batesian mimicry selective pressure drivers+ enhanced predation efficiency drivers offer my first time encounter with this 'predatory robber-fly bumblebee-mimic' ...such a fascination! Thanks for your comments, and for your directions for me to pursue.  all the best, charlie guevara, fingerlakes/US

      From: Jack Neff <jlnatctmi@...>
      To: Liz Day <lizday44@...>; "beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com" <beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Monday, June 11, 2012 6:16 PM
      Subject: Re: [beemonitoring] Re: Are predatory 'bumble-bee mimicks' common? please advise?

      I've always assumed the Bombus mimicking asilids are Batesian mimics given where they hang out and what kind of potential prey items are available. Usually they take prey that are significantly smaller than they are our and local bumble bees, mainly B. pensylvanicus,  rarely qualify.


      John L. Neff
      Central Texas Melittological Institute
      7307 Running Rope
      Austin,TX 78731 USA
      From: Liz Day <lizday44@...>
      To: "beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com" <beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Monday, June 11, 2012 3:01 PM
      Subject: Re: [beemonitoring] Re: Are predatory 'bumble-bee mimicks' common? please advise?


      > I'll enjoy trying to find literature on the drivers to this
      > mimickry, why mimic Bombus appearance and flight style? For prey
      > I'd guess which are visually wary, for prey in the environs which
      > Bombus is prominent and active in? ..... .I wonder if this
      > predicts a lot about the mimics prefered prey?

      I had thought the mimicry was "directed" at predators of the robber
      fly such as birds, since the fly spends a lot of time sitting on leaves.

      Liz Day

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