Andrena marginata- Dark form- Kings Forest


This is another first for me and while it is down as Andrena marginata which it is , it comes in two colour forms the dark like mine or a orange abdomen form they are now doing a DNA test on species collected to see if they are two separate species , both only feed on small scabious

A medium-sized mining bee with dark males but females that can have a mainly red abdomen or a dark one (with a full range of intermediates). Males have the lower face whitish with two small black spots, and the lower margin of the clypeus is strongly out-curved and ending in sharp points. Both sexes have the lower hind corners of the head strongly angulated.

Most records are within southern England and South Wales, extending as far north as Lincolnshire (though entirely absent from the Midlands). A small number of sites are known in the Scottish Highlands, and there are also some Irish records. The modern strongholds include Salisbury Plain and the East Anglian Brecks and it has declined substantially over most of its former range.

A. marginata requires scabious-rich habitats, including chalk grassland, coastal grasslands, heathland, moorland edge and woodland rides. On calcareous sites, it obtains its pollen mainly from Field and Small scabiouses and peaks in late July and early August. On more acidic sites (including all its Scottish sites) it forages on Devil’s-bit Scabious and peaks in late August and early September to coincide with the later flowering of this plant.

Nesting has not been observed in Britain but is presumed to occur in light, sparsely-vegetated ground or short turf. It is the special host of the rare cleptoparasitic nomad bee Nomada argentata. It is a conservation priority species.

Anoplius viaticus (Spider hunting wasp) with prey (Kings forest)

Anoplius viaticus is one of the largest (14mm) and most spectacular spider-hunting wasps, with striking red and black bands on the abdomen. They are found entirely in sandy habitats and overwinter as adults, resulting in their being active from March onwards. This is much earlier than the vast majority of Pompilidae – the only others around in early spring are similarly overwintering species Priocnemis coriacea, Priocnemis perturbator and Priocnemis susterai. The hibernation occurs in deep burrows.

Prey is varied but consists principally of Lycosidae.

Red-necked Footman Atolmis rubricollis (Kings forest)

Wingspan 25-35 mm.

A primarily woodland species, which is distributed locally in the south and west of England and Wales, and parts of Ireland. Occasional records from elsewhere are considered to be probable migrants.

The single generation flies in June and July, when it can sometimes be found flying in the daytime. It is also nocturnal, coming to light.

Feeding on lichens and algae growing on tree-trunks, the larvae live in autumn, and the species overwinters as a pupa.

Aphanus rolandri (kings Forest Suffolk)

Aphanus rolandri
Family: Lygaeidae

A large and very distinctive black ground bug with a dark red or orange spot at the base of the wing membrane; confusion with other species is unlikely.

A. rolandri has been found in a variety of dry, sheltered and well-drained habitats which have a thin covering of leaf litter or stones, such as chalk pits, cliffsides and (historically) cultivated arable fields. Adults overwinter, becoming active in the spring. The new generation is complete by August.

A scarce species known primarily from the south of England between Cornwall and Kent, with a scatter of records as far north as north Norfolk and the midlands.

Adult: All year
Length 6-8 mm… British Bugs