Chrysolina polita – Bury Ditches Hill fort Clun

Length 6.5 to 8.5 mm. Conspicuous with its shiny red-chestnut elytra and dark metallic green pronotum.
Amongst the foliage of trees and bushes.
When to see it
March to October.
Life History
They generally overwinter as adults.
UK Status
Fairly common and widespread in England and Wales, fewer records from Scotland.
VC55 Status
Fairly frequent in Leicestershire and Rutland. There were a total of 109 VC55 records for this species up to March 2015.

Cassida viridis-Bury Ditches hill Fort- Clun

Length 7.5 to 10 mm. This is an all green Tortoise Beetle that lacks the markings of other Cassida species.
Similar Species
Cassida viridis is similar to C. rubiginosa but can be distinguished by the rounded rear corners of the pronotum(sharp in C. rubiginosa). It is also usually more apple green in colour.
Photo ID? Identifiable from a photo with care
Low vegetation, particularly White Dead-nettle and Mint.
When to see it
April to October.
Life History
The very spiny larva holds a bundle of cast skins and droppings over its back which it uses to fend off predators and parasites, the adults grip on to a leaf and pull themselves down, thus presenting no grip to predators.
UK Status
Fairly frequent and widespread in England and Wales, but fewer records from Scotland…Naturespot

Rhagium mordax -Bury Ditches hill Fort- Clun

This is a yellow beetle with brown and black mottling and two eye-like spots on its wing-cases. For a ‘long-horn’ beetle, it has relatively short antennae.
The adult favours open-structured flowers, particularly Hawthorn and umbellifers where it feeds on nectar and pollen. Can be found in woods and hedgerows in most parts of Britain and is most often seen around flowers or in hedgerows in country areas.
When to see it
Adults are seen between May and July.
Life History
The larvae are found in the very rotten wood of most species of broad-leaved trees, especially just under the bark.
UK Status
Widespread and quite common in Britain….Naturesopt

Centrotus cornutus-treehopper-Bury Ditches hill Fort- Clun

Centrotus cornutus
Family: Membracidae

One of only two UK treehoppers, C. cornutus can be found locally on a range of plants in woodland rides and similar habitats.

The other species, Gargara genistae is associated with broom. It is smaller than C. cornutus, lacks the horn-like projections on the pronotum and has a shorter dorsal spine.

Adult: April-August
Length: c10 mm.. UK BUGs

Sexton Beetle – Nicrophorus vespilloides-Bury Ditches hill Fort- Clun

This beetle had just landed and was folding its wings away , until it saw me then was back airborne. You can see it is carrying Mites these are harmless to the beetle and are merely hitchhiking .

This is a very distinctive and brightly coloured beetle, with black and orange patterning on the elytra. The wing cases are squarish and shorter than the abomen.

Under dead birds and mammals.
When to see it
This beetle is commonly seen at light in gardens, often in company with a related, all black species, the Black Sexton Beetle.
Life History
These beetles perform an important service in getting rid of carrion (dead small animals and birds). Males and females cooperate to bury this matter, by digging beneath the bodies to provide a food supply for their larvae.
UK Status
Fairly common and widespread in Britain… Nature Spot

Criorhina berberina-Bury Ditches hill Fort- Clun

A widespread but localised species of ancient woodland and other places with old trees. Two very different colour forms exist – the ‘type’ form with a white tail and broad yellow collar (a superb mimic of the Tree Bumblebee, Bombus hypnorum) and the all-yellow form ‘oxycanthae’ (a mimic of carder bumblebees like B. pascuorum). The latter is very similar to another hoverfly, the late-flying Arctophila superbiens.

Both sexes visit flowers like Hawthorn and Bramble. Females are often seen flying slowly around stumps and the bases of old trees in shaded locations. They give a superb impression of a small bumblebee looking for its nest . The larvae develop in wet decaying tree roots and probably old rotten stumps, typically of broadleaved species, though coniferous species can be used abroad…Steve Falk

Alosterna tabacicolor -Bury Ditches hill Fort- Clun

A rather small (body length 6-10mm), black and brown longhorn resembling a small, dark Stenurella melanura or Anastrangalia sanguinolenta but with reddish legs.

A. tabacicolor is widespread and locally common in southern Britain, with records extending thinly into Scotland. The larvae develop within the rotting stumps and branches of various broadleaved and coniferous trees and take two years to mature. Adults can be seen from April until August…Steve Falk

Pachytodes cerambyciformis-Bury Ditches hill Fort- Clun

A medium-sized (7-12mm), black and yellow longhorn resembling a small, squat Rutpela maculata. It is frequent in Wales, south-west, and the Surrey/West Sussex area with more scattered records extending to north Scotland. However, it rare or absent over much of central and eastern England, suggesting it prefers damper climates.

The larvae develop in the wood of various broadleaved and coniferous tree species, typically in exposed roots of fallen trees, and take two years to develop. Adults fly from May until Augusts and feed on a variety of flowers including Bramble, umbellifers and buttercups…Steve Falk

Bombus campestris -Bury Ditches hill Fort- Clun

One of our smaller cuckoo bumblebees, a parasite of B. pascuorum and possibly other carder bees such as humilis and ruderarius. It is a rather variable species which can produce challenges during field identification. Females are relatively small, fluffy and with a sparse body pilosity, especially on the abdomen. The typical pattern comprises a broad buff collar, a conspicuous buff-haired scutellum and a tail that is buff-haired at the sides but remains black-haired in the middle. Darkened females are occasionally encountered, whilst in Scotland, females are occasionally found with the thorax almost entirely yellow (form swynnertoni).

Males are extremely variable. At the palest extreme they are almost entirely pale-haired except for a black band between and below the wing bases and another black band around tergite 2. The thorax frequently becomes entirely black leaving just the tip of the abdomen buff-haired, and fully black individuals are not rare. It is also possible to find males with white tails which can rather resemble barbutellus males, though the white tail is generally more extensive in campestris (tergite 3 onwards). Fortunately, campestris males have a conspicuous pair of hair tuft on sternite 6 which should be viewable on a hand-held specimen using a hand lens, and the genitalia is very distinct (checking this will necessitate the taking of a specimen)… Steve Falk