I saw something unusual on my short daily walk. I was trying to photograph a couple of violets growing in the grass when an insect I have never seen before alighted on the ground. To be honest, I didn’t really pay much attention because I was focussing on the flowers. When I looked at the shot later, I could see that it was big and furry with long thin legs and a straight proboscis seeking nectar from the violets – but it wasn’t a bee of any kind, nor a moth. It was a Dotted Bee-Fly (Bombylius discolor). Apparently there are a lot around at the moment. It has a nasty side as the larva is parasitic on other insects, especially on solitary bees and wasps.
Some more information from the Natural History Museum