Robber fly resources
This is the home page of one of the world experts on the robber flies. A tremendous amount of information is available here and nowhere else online. There is information about the history of study of these insects, their morphology, phylogeny, distribution, ecology, and biology. There are also figures of all the insect parts, labeled with the names of these structures, and a glossary of terms. If you see anything in the descriptions that you don’t understand, go here for an explanation.
This site has information about robber flies of Arkansas, but Herschel has also collected probable state lists of likely species based upon known distributions, a variety of keys, and other links. He also has pages on butterflies, odes, and is working on some spiders and several other insect groups.
For robber flies, Herschel is considered the robber fly guru by many contributors to bugguide.net. Post a robber fly there with a question mark and Herschel will be sure to respond. I have spent a lot of time looking through his robber flies, and he has been a great help in identifying some of my first photos. There are some terrific photos here!
The Robber flies of Crowley’s Ridge, Arkansas (Norm Laver’s site)
Norm has a lot of interesting information in these pages that you won’t get elsewhere. He wants to be able to “robber fly” like one would bird, and so he pays particular attention to field marks that might be used to help identify these in the field. The photos and information here, despite being focused on the Arkansas robber flies, will keep you coming back.
Bugguide is an online community where people post photos and information on insects, spiders, and other like organisms. I learned several of the Wisconsin species by first seeing them on this site.
Giff has taken many photos of the robber flies of Georgia, which include many of the Wisconsin species that I have yet to see and photograph. Giff also has pages on beetles, caterpillars, butterflies, moths, bee flies, odes, grasshoppers, and other insects.
This page will include all the species currently listed in these pages as Laphria, but as of April 1, 2009 this site only contains information about the species that he will leave in the genus Laphria. Once he has published his work, the Laphria will probably be divided into four genera, all of which are found in Wisconsin and many of the species names on these pages will be changed to coincide with these changes, and detailed information on these new groups will be available on his web page. He has been working on this group of robber flies for over 30 years and is the expert on the North American species. For his thesis work on this group he examined over 17,000 pinned specimens!