Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Blow fly

Sep 28th, amidst a long weekend, and on a Ayudha pooja day, decided to cycle to Hoskote lake. The lake had some water....and I spent one hour looking around.....there was promise behind every bush, and secrets beneath the stones.

And, as I was gearing to start back, chanced upon these two fly on a twig. They sat there without flying away though I took hazzar macro pics.

Blow fly - the metallic body strikes you - the red & yellow in the head also stands out. These chaps can smell dead matter & dung for miles....I read 10 miles somewhere.....and the first thing they do is to lay an egg on it.....and soon start eating away the matter...the smell soon disappears.....the maggots hatch....and immediately start eating the decomposing matter...

This immediate egg hatching ability is made use by forensic detectives. Body found - highly decomposed - when was the murder committed ?? after 72 hours, it gets difficult, thats where the forensic entomologist steps in. And, figures out which developmental stage the blow flys are. The time stages of the developmental cycles are quite deterministic. And now, its 2+2 for Mr. Sherlock Holmes!

Next time, you see dung or dead matter, watch out for the blow flys and thank them for their good work!