Narcissus Bulb Flies resemble bumble bees and can be quite variable in coloration including colors of reddish brown, orange & tan. Some also have distinctive dark stripes on the abdomen. Eggs are laid between the sheath & stem of each bulb. Once the eggs hatch, the maggots will bore down through the outer bulb and eventually bore directly inside the bulb. The maggots will develop fully inside the bulb, but will not pupate until the following spring.There is one generation per year although some individuals require 2 years to mature. This repeated boring can kill the plant, as the bulbs will eventually begin to rot. Adults nectar on flowers and are pollinators.
Introduced from Europe to North America. Wherever narcissus are grown. Host Plants: amaryllis, daffodil, Galtonia, Flanthus, hyacinth, Iris, lilies, Leucofum, Narcissus, Scilla, tulips, and Vallota.
Bulb flies have few natural enemies, so they are not easy to control. Lifting the bulbs out after the tops die back and destroying infested bulbs may decrease the following year populations. Catching the flies in a net & destroying them may also help, as each female can lay up to 100 eggs.