Like many people I am not a big of flies. There are approximately 120,000 species of flies in the world and most of the ones that I have encountered are not on my friends list. In my experience many fly species are parasitic. They bite mammals, birds, and people and drink some of their blood. During the summer the deer and black flies in the northern two thirds of Minnesota can be almost unbearable. Then there are house flies that are always trying to raise their maggots in your food and garbage. However I did come across this rather cool looking fly in the southeastern corner of the state. The golden-backed snipe fly is native to eastern portions of North America. I am guessing that Minnesota is on the edge of their range because I have only seen these flies once in my 50 long years of life. There is not a lot of information available about this species, or most insects for that matter, but it is believed to be a predator that eats other insects instead of a parasite. So not only does it look great but it is also less biting.