What Do Flies Do ?
The thought came to me whilst looking at a fly in a contemplative mood, that is to say I was in a contemplative mood not sure how the fly felt, what exactly is the purpose of the fly ?
Mother Nature does everything for a reason . . .
The fly is, I think, generally much maligned. I have to say, I had nothing positive to say about them, quite the reverse in fact, until I started doing macro photography.
This opened my eyes, quite literally, to the staggeringly diverse world of flies and insects in general. A fly is no longer a fly when seen in close up and whilst it’s a stretch to say it’s a thing of beauty it’s certainly something to marvel at.
But what purpose do they serve in the grand scheme of things ? Nothing natural is here for nothing !
Their Public Relations Image is pretty poor as they’re always seen in a negative light in culture, literature and films etc. Always used as an image of death, disease and decay they could certainly use the services of a good PR Spin Doctor.
I did read that flies do some pollinating though I’m not sure if this is a general widespread function or something occasional, you don’t hear about it unlike our friends the bees
I know the ‘maggots’ they bring into the world are in the decomposition and decay business so perhaps that’s their purpose - portable composting and biodegrading machines.
They’ve been about a while, amber testifies to that, so they’re millions of years, or 6,000 if you’re a Creationist, along the evolutionary scale so they must have survived and prospered for a reason.
They seem to have more against them than for them as far as I can see, spreaders of disease and pestilence they must be amongst the greatest killers on the planet.
Possibly that’s the answer then, Mother Nature gives us disease carriers to naturally balance populations - it would certainly fit in with the checks and balances required to ensure the survival of the earth when looked at through emotionless and purely logical eyes.
The more I think about it the more it would fit in with Natural Selection, the weak, elderly and sick are more likely to be affected, also they cause more problems when you’ve got severe over-crowding.
I wonder whether that is the prime reason then - nature will always try and balance things out for the greater overall good - perhaps the humble fly is a tool for carrying out that work ?
I’d be more than interested to hear any more opinion, theories or practical suggestions.