Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Honeysuckle Sawfly - Zaraea lonicerae

Honeysuckle Sawfly Carlton, Notts 21st May 2013
 I've had these absolute beauties in the garden for two years now.  They hang around near to my two honeysuckle but as yet I've not seen one on the plant.  However A flick through the AIDGAP key to the genera of British Sawflies quickly sent me to the family Cimbicidae and the genera of either Abia or Zaraea, the brown yellow streak on the wings gives the genus away.  However the key only runs through to genus and I have no further keys to take me to species. However, a description of Abia suggests rare species feeding on Scabious, a plant not in my patch whilst our two species of Zaraea both feed on Honeysuckle.  A quick internet trawl and I'm settling on Zaraea lonicerae.  NBN gateway only shows a few squares marked in down south for current distribution.  Perhaps its new to Nottinghamshire.  Whatever the reason for it being here I'll make sure I find the larvae on my honeysuckle later in the season.  Hope you enjoy the pictures as much as I enjoy the fly (I should really say primitive wasp). 
Honeysuckle sawfly - Carlton Notts 21st May 2013

PS - I'm no expert on sawflies so if I've made a howler in i.d. then please let me know. And finally, pictures were taken early evening it was also a little dull, I don't use flash so had to increase ISO to 500 to get working light, hence not tip top sharp image. Still you get the picture it's a beautiful thing.
Sawfly Carlton Notts Garden 21st May 2013 - resting on Flag Iris. 

1 comment:

  1. Hello Adrian, had one in my garden this afternoon, we too have honeysuckle, (also scabious), the clubbed antennae seem to be a good indicator for Zaraea lonicerae from what I am told. I am in Allestree, Derby, west of you but more north and east than the records on the NBN, they must be going unnoticed and under recorded. Steve