Student Conference on Conservation Science

Plenaries 2023

"The wonderful world of hoverflies"

Dr Ante Vujić

Hoverflies (Diptera, Syrphidae) are commonly known as flower visitors and pollinators, as well as mimics of bees and wasps. Furthermore, because of the aphid-feeding habit of the larvae of some of them, they are recognized as biocontrol agents in various crops. However,there is a lot more to tell about them. More than 900 syrphid species are known in Europe, about half of which occur in the Mediterranean zone. Hoverfly larvae can be found in almost every habitat, except caves and the deep water of rivers and lakes, and exhibit an unusual diversity of larval biology for one family of Diptera. They include not only predators of plant bugs, larvae of beetles and small moths, but also plant feeders in stems, tubers and bulbs of herbaceous plants, and a wide range of microphages/saprophages. They are excellent ecosystems indicators, great model for development of conservation strategies and beautiful in nature on the flowers.