Massive swarms of flies carpet shores of Mono Lake in California
In this clip, swarms of Alkali Flies carpet the shores of Mono Lake in California.
What appear to be patches of dirt on the shores are actually swarms of these flies.
Alkali flies are an uncommon insect that lives on the shores of salty lakes. During the summer, they hatch en mass, numbering into the millions.
They spend most of their lives underwater. Tiny hairs and waxes on their abdomen trap an air bubble around their body which allows them to crawl underwater, searching for somewhere to lay their eggs and for algae to feed upon.
Alkali flies provide a great source of nutrition for indigenous communities. They eat the fly larva, which they scoop from the water in baskets.