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Robber Fly

Yesterday Zoe photographed this fly which alighted on my back during our walk round the Reading University grounds.  It is probably a red-legged robber fly (Dioctria rufipes).  Note the white 'beard' which is said to protect the eyes from damage by struggling prey.

[Note added 2011-03-30:  The side of the thorax looks wrong for Dioctria rufipes.  Probably not a Dioctria sp. ]

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