Fly dead outside tree bumblebee nest entrance with fungus on its abdomen-video

July 18, 2013

in A selection of my garden wildlife videos, Bumblebees and their ecology, Gardening For Wildlife, Insects

Death outside the tree bumblebees nest box.

There were 2 dead houseflies stuck to the outside of the tree bumblebee’s nest entrance, which itself was sticky. The bees were still inside. One had a black and white stripped abdomen which I found very strange, having never seen it before. A quick internet search and photographs of similar occurrences makes me believe it is probably a fungus called Entomophthora muscae, which attacks and kills house flies…  this was during the heat wave we have experienced July 2013. Closer examination of the fly underneath reveals a blanket type structure enveloping the abdomen making it look like it has been coated in icing!

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