Soldier flies are large and dark in color. They may have two white patches just behind the wings and have a flattened appearance. Soldier fly larvae and pupae are dark brown and flattened and are about 1 inch in length.
Soldier flies lay eggs in garbage and other decaying organic material, compost piles and dumpsters. Larvae stay in the site, but will pupate outside of the food source, sometimes around poorly cleaned dumpsters.