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Eristalis alleni as an adult is a typical flower fly, visiting flowers for pollen and nectar. Males also hover in the air near flowering plants. Nothing specific is known of the immature stages, but they are probably similar to those of other eristaline flower flies. The maggots of eristaline flies live in aquatic habitats, breathing air through long tails which reach to the water surface (hence, are called rat-tailed maggots). They feed by filtering nutrients from the water.