Beneficial Bug: The Hover Fly

Familiar garden predators like ladybugs and praying mantises often get all the credit for controlling bad bugs. Check out what this largely unsung backyard hero can do.

Font
  • A
  • A
  • A

E-mail This Page to Your Friends

x

All fields are required.

Separate multiple e-mail addresses with a comma; Maximum 20 email addresses.

Refresh

Sending E-mail

Sending E-mail

Or Do Not E-mail

Success!

A link to %this page% was e-mailed

Hoverfly on a Green Leaf

This critter resembles a small bee, but it's a bona fide member of the fly family. It doesn't sting. Like flies, it has two wings rather than four. But unlike many other insects, it executes telltale aerial maneuvers: it can suspend flight in mid-air, then dart quickly backward, forward or sideways.

In spring you can often find the young adults visiting flowers and foliage. Avoid using pesticides — even insecticidal soaps — and you'll likely see more. It's good to have this insect patrolling your garden. As a significant pollinator and bad-bug eater, the hover fly is an especially good friend to anyone who grows vegetables and fruits.

12Next »

We Recommend...

The Lowdown on Garden-Friendly Bugs

The Lowdown on Garden-Friendly Bugs

Learn about a variety of insects that can help prevent garden pests from terrorizing your yard.

Live With Critters in the Garden

Live With Critters in the Garden

Learn how to coexist peacefully with the various creatures who love your garden.

Eye-Catching Aloe Plants for the Garden

Eye-Catching Aloe Plants for the Garden

It's fine if you like your aloe plants plain and green, but if you crave variety, the aloe family offers hundreds of selections.

(12 photos)
Advertisement

HGTV Outdoors Newsletter

Find out how to make the most of patios, decks and all your outdoor areas, plus tips from master gardeners for beautiful flower beds and bountiful vegetable gardens.