Sunday, 13 January 2013

Nottinghamshire Longhorn Beetles (Cerambycidae)

Clytus arietus - Wasp Beetle by Lamia textor
The Wasp Beetle Clytus arietus Sherwood Forest Nottinghamshire

One of the main intentions of this blog is to try to get people to go out and have a look for some of the beetles that I have found in Nottinghamshire.  It's aimed at those naturalists who generally know their birds, have a good idea of what butterfly they're looking at and probably take notice of most things that fly and buzz past them in the summer but can't put a species name to them.  So where to start with beetles, I'd probably say showy ones that like sitting on flowers, the majority of which can be identified using a photograph.  Therefore my first few beetle blogs have concentrated on Longhorn beetles of the family Cerambycidae. About 60 species of the worlds 20,000 odd species can be considered British. Of these I would say that approximately 20 occur in Nottinghamshire, I say approximately as species are found new to the county, some rare species may no longer be in the county.   These range in size from the conspicuous Musk Beetle (Aromia moschata) average size about 30mm to the inconspicuous Plum beetle, Tetrops praeustus at around 4-5mm.   Most have the characteristic Long antenna that give them their distinctive look and most visit flowers at some time of their brief lives. The table below lists the species I have so far encountered in Nottinghamshire together with when and where the best place in the county is to see them.  I will in the near future be adding more detailed notes on several of the species listed below. I would also be interested in receiving information on other sites for these species and if you are aware of other species being found in the county.  Apologies for lack of Common names, they don't exist for many and in all honesty, if you get into beetles you don't need them or use them.  Illustrated identification guides were published in British Wildlife Magazine August and October 2007 editions, these may still be available from the publishers.   

Latin Name Best Months to findWhere to find Visits Flowers
Rhagium bifasciatum April/MayPine Woods Sherwood Forest
Rhagium mordax April/MayPine woods, North Notts. 
Stenocorus meridianusJuneAsh Woods Along the Trent, Treswell WoodYes
Grammoptera ruficornisApril/MayAlmost ubiquitous - on Hawthorn blossom Yes
Leptura quadrifasciataJune/JulyTrent Valley, Holme Pierrepont, Shelford, Sherwood F.Yes
Paracorymbia fulvaJulyToton Sidings (Notts Derbys border)Yes
Rutpela maculataJune/JulySherwood Forest, infrequent in trent Vally woods. Yes
Stenurella melanuraNot sure where, found one on dog daisy in Carlton Notts.Yes
Asemum striatumApril/MayPine Woods Sherwood Forest, early morning on logs 
Arhopalus rusticusAugust/SeptemberAt Moth trap lights Sherwood Forest
Aromia moschataJuly/AugustTrent Valley, Holme Pierrepont, Attenborough NR. Yes
Pyrrhidium sanguineumApril?
Phymatodes testaceusJulySherwood Forest, Difficult - it's nocturnal 
Poecilium alniMayOn freshly cut Oak, Sherwood Forest 
Clytus arietusMay/JuneCommon, Easily seen at Sherwood Forest on cut Oak Yes
Anaglyptus mysticusMay/JuneHawthorn Blossom Trent Valley Yes
Agapanthia villosoviridescensJuneOn Hogweed or thistle stems - Holme PierrepontYes
Leiopus nebulosusJune/JulySherwood Forest. 
Saperda scalarisJuneOn Logs Sherwood Forest. Quite Scarce so difficult to find
Stenostola dubia Wellow Wood (I have not seen this one) 
Phytoeica cylindricaApril/MayStems Cow Parsley, Trent Valley Along River Shelford Yes
Tetrops praeustus May/JuneHawthorn Bloosom, Shelford, Holme Pierrepont Yes

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