The adult bee-flies feed on nectar and sometimes pollen. They often hover next to the plant and rest two legs (front or hind) on the flower whilst feeding.

They are incredibly fast and agile fliers. They tend to fly at 0.5 metres above ground, but can reach up to 3 metres.

Many individuals fly along the ground to absorb heat, whilst others fly further up trees to maximise direct sunlight.  

When cold, the bee-flies perch vertically, pointing upwards, and they can remain in this position for a week or even longer (Knight 1967).

Adults will also whirr their wings to warm up the flight muscles before take-off.