Laphria sacrator

This was one of the first Laphria that I ever photographed and after I sent my photos to Herschel Raney from Arkansas and looked more at photographs of robber flies, I wanted to learn more about them. This is a more northern species and is fairly common throughout northern Wisconsin as I have seen photographs of this species from three counties in Wisconsin on the web, and I have seen it widely in central and northern Wisconsin.

Identifying characteristics

Yellow hairs on the mystax, thorax, and first three segments of the abdomen. Long yellow hairs on the posterior of the first two pairs of legs help make this one of the hairiest looking Laphria. There are some fine reddish hairs, usually present in a thin line on the inside of the fore legs that are very noticeable in the field with binoculars.

Similar species

L. huron is somewhat similar in size and color, but is not as hairy as this species with no yellow hairs present on the top of the abdomen.

Habitat

I have seen this species in dry savannah like woods and as well as more moist woodlands.

Flight

June through July.

Abundance

Not as common as L. divisor, L. sericea, or L. thoracica in central Wisconsin. I have never seen more than two of this species in one day.

Locations

Map showing sighting locations for Laphria sacrator
Map key
Laphria sacratorClick to enlarge

Laphria sacrator with a six-spotted tiger beetle (cicindela sexguttata) as prey.

Emmons Creek Fishery Area, June 18, 2008.

Laphria sacratorClick to enlarge

Laphria sacrator with unknown beetle as prey.

NE of Wild Rose, June 18, 2008.

Laphria sacratorClick to enlarge

Laphria sacrator

Tri-County School Forest, June 24, 2008.

Laphria sacratorClick to enlarge

Laphria sacrator

Radley Creek Fishery Area, June 19, 2008.