Pseudodoros clavatus, a Syrphid Fly  
Pseudodoros clavatus, a Syrphid Fly, green larva on a Whitevine Milkweed leaf eating a yellow aphid
These little green worms kept drawing my eye while I was looking at butterfly caterpillars on my milkweed vine. I noticed that they were eating aphids, which makes any garden bug a welcome visitor! See the little yellow dot with legs at the end of the green slug or bug or whatever it is? The green creature is eating the yellow aphid.
Now I got curious. What on earth are these little green things on my plants? I noticed that they were making small brown cocoons, so I brought in a large green slug (a term I use loosely here) and fed it aphids until it made a cocoon too.
Syrphid Fly larva eating an aphid
The green larva are really tiny.
This bug crawling on the milkweed vine above my finger is about as big as they get. After they reach this size, they turn into mall brown cocoons, or pupa.
Pseudodoros clavatus larva, aphid control bug
Pseudodoros clavatus larva, little green caterpillar like bug
Pseudodoros clavatus cocoon, fly pupa
Syrphid fly Pseudodoros clavatus pupa on milkweed flower buds
I never thought of aphids as pet food before....  Yumm, Aphid! Thus far, my caterpillars eat plants, so I wasn't prepared to call this pointy on one end and rounded on the other end creature a caterpillar, and it wasn't a slug, but I really wasn't sure what it was.
Imagine my surprise when it emerged as a fly!
I stared, a bit stunned, tilted my head sideways so to speak, and absorbed the idea that I'd deliberately fed and raised, well, maggots.  EEEW Gross! I brought my new bug outside for pictures, but it flew away rather quickly. I've since found a syrphid fly enjoying both Spanish Needles and Wild Poinsettia flowers, and another resting on an Australian Pine needle.
Pseudodoros clavatus cocoon
These aren't your typical house flies. They're Syrphid flies, and obviously great for aphid control, so this is one fly you might not want to swat.
Pseudodoros clavatus, a Syrphid Fly
Pseudodoros clavatus, a Syrphid Fly on a Spanish Needles flower
Pseudodoros clavatus, a Syrphid Fly on the bottom of a milkweed leaf
Pseudodoros clavatus, a Syrphid Fly resting on an Australian Pine needle
Pseudodoros clavatus, a Syrphid Fly enjoying a Wild Poinsettia flower
Pseudodoros clavatus larva, little green fly larva on a Firebush flower
Pseudodoros clavatus larva, little green fly larva eating yellow aphids
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