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Entomology (Study of Bugs)/What is this cockroach-mosquito-wasp ?


I work on solar fields in San Antonio, Tx.  This bug landed on our intern and I got a close up pic. It had a black stinger.  What is it


Thanks for including the image with your question.  Your intern was obviously very brave :-)

The insect is a type of robber fly called a "hanging thief."  Robber flies are predatory on other insects, and that "stinger" is a beak that it uses to bite its prey.

These insects get their name from their habit of hanging from one or two legs while manipulating recently-captured prey.  Here's more:


So, no worries, they won't bite unless you physically grab one, and good luck with that as they are very alert and quick to fly away.


Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Eric R. Eaton


I answer insect and spider identification questions ONLY. Attach images if possible. No "what bit me?", "what do I feed this bug in captivity?", or science fair project questions please. NO TECHNICAL QUESTIONS ABOUT INSECT PHYSIOLOGY.


Principal author, Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America. Professional entomologist employed previously at University of Massachusetts, Chase Studio, Inc., and Cincinnati Zoo; contract work for West Virginia Department of Natural Resources, Smithsonian Institution, and Portland (Oregon) State University.

Author, Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America, Missouri Conservationist magazine, Ranger Rick, Birds & Blooms, Timeline (journal of the Ohio Historical Society). I have contributed to several books as well.

Oregon State University, undergraduate major in entomology, did not receive degree.

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One of the top 50 experts in all categories for, 2009.

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Principal author of the Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America, Smithsonian Institution (contract), Cincinnati Zoo (employer), Portland State University (contract), Chase Studio, Inc (employer), Arkansas Museum of Discovery (guest speaker). Currently seeking speaking engagements, leadership roles at nature festivals, workshops, and ecotours.

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