Melangyna viridiceps

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Melangyna viridiceps
Hoverfly perched on grass.jpg
Hoverfly on flower in Sydney.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Diptera
Family: Syrphidae
Genus: Melangyna
Species: M. viridiceps
Binomial name
Melangyna viridiceps
(Macquart, 1847) [1]

Melangyna viridiceps is an Australian hoverfly, known as the common hover fly.[2] It is found widely across Eastern Australia. It is one of the two most common hoverflies in Australia, alongside Simosyrphus grandicornis,[3] with which it has often been confused,[4] but can be distinguished by its all black thorax.[5] The adult flies feed on pollen and nectar which they gather from flowers, while the larvae feed on aphids.[6]

Some sources indicate that the species is also present in New Zealand, either on the Kermadec Islands only,[7] or on both the Kermadecs and the mainland.[8] Most recent sources,[9] however, do not record this species as being present outside of Australia. Miller's 1921 mention for the Kermadec was found to be a misidentification for Simosyrphus grandicornis,[4] and Macfarlane et al.[7] failed to cite specimens or published reports for their claim of the species' presence in the Kermadec.


  1. ^ Rudolf Meier; et al. (17 May 2005). "Collection inventory of the Diptera collection: Syrphidae". Zoological Museum, University of Copenhagen (ZMUC). 
  2. ^ "Common hover fly Melangyna viridiceps". CSIRO. 18 September 2004. 
  3. ^ E. Soleyman-Nezhadiyan & R. Laughlin (1998). "Voracity of larvae, rate of development in eggs, larvae and pupae, and flight seasons of adults of the hoverflies Melangyna viridiceps Macquart and Symosyrphus grandicornis Macquart (Diptera: Syrphidae)". Australian Journal of Entomology. 37 (3): 243–248. doi:10.1111/j.1440-6055.1998.tb01578.x. 
  4. ^ a b F.C. Thompson (2008). "A conspectus of New Zealand flower flies (Diptera: Syrphidae) with the description of a new genus and species" (PDF). Zootaxa (1716): 1–20. 
  5. ^ Chew, Peter. "Hover Fly - Family Syrphidae". Retrieved 2011-08-30. 
  6. ^ "Common hover fly — Melangyna viridiceps". Brisbane Insects and Spiders Home Page. 22 December 2004. Archived from the original on 28 August 2005.  (Note that while the text is correct, the photos are misidentified specimens of Simosyrphus)
  7. ^ a b R. P. Macfarlane; I. G. Andrew; B. J. Sinclair; et al. (3 March 2000). "Checklist of New Zealand Diptera". New Zealand Entomological Society. Archived from the original on 27 May 2010. 
  8. ^ D. Miller (1921). "Material for a monograph on the Diptera fauna of New Zealand. Part II, Family Syrphidae". Transactions and Proceedings of the New Zealand Institute. 53: 289–333. 
  9. ^ For example the New Zealand Organisms Registry does not list it for its New Zealand Regin (which includes the Kermadec Islands).

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