Volucella bombylans (Linnaeus, 1758)
Hoverflies belong to the Syrphidae family and often get incorrectly identified as bees and wasps, due their mimicry of bees and wasps. Such mimicry is very well exhibited by Volucella bombylans - probably the area's largest species of Hoverfly. We only found it recently, along the western edge of Lound Wood at the end of May 2005, where these photographs were taken. Like many species of Hoverfly, V. bombylans are best looked for at sunny, sheltered sites. They are fairly obvious, due to their large size and are completely harmless. The larvae live as scavengers in the nests of bees and wasps, feeding on dead insects and other debris.
Nottinghamshire (VC56) distribution of Volucella bombylans
Volucella bombylans var. plumata, photographed at Dyscarr Wood in July 2015 by Pauline Bradford.
The records for the Nottinghamshire distribution map are currently provided by the following contributors - Richard Rogers. Trevor and Dilys Pendleton. Netherfield Wildlife Group. Pauline Bradford. Wil Heeney. Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust. Tim Sexton. Darren Matthews. Nottingham City Council. Brian Wetton. Trevor and Dilys Pendleton (Sherwood Forest Invertebrate Directory 2014). Paul and Helen Brock. John and Denise Bingham. Josh Hedley.

You can contribute your own records to help us gain an accurate status of this species in Nottinghamshire. Send an Excel spreadsheet of your records via the 'contact us' link at the top of the homepage.

Updated January 2021

copyright Trevor and Dilys Pendleton (www.eakringbirds.com) . .
True Flies etc Photo Gallery - Thumbnail version
True Flies etc Photo Gallery - Text version