FOUR SPECIES OF COLEOPTERA PROBABLY NEW TO THE SUFFOLK COUNTY LIST DAVID R . NASH
the death of Claude Morley in 1951, few notes concerning Suffolk Coleoptera have been published, either in the national entomological literature or in the pages of this journal. The major exception has been Pope's survey of the Coleoptera of Redgrave and Lopham Fens, carried out at the request of the Suffolk Naturalists' Trust (Pope, R. D., 1968). As far as I am aware, Morley kept the County List of Coleoptera fairly up to date until around the time of his death, by means of numerous notes which appeared in these transactions, or in the national entomological journals. Any species which Morley and his contemporary Suffolk entomologists—e.g., E. A. Elliott—did not take in the County, may be considered rare, or very locally distributed, since although Morley did not specialise in Coleoptera alone, he was none-the-less an indefatigable collector who worked the County intensively for about fifty years. The species reported in this paper may therefore be considered either extremely rare in the County, or eise to be of very local distribution. SINCE
Dolichosoma lineare (Rossi). (DASYTIDAE.) One specimen of this interesting, very locally distributed coastal species was swept from saltmarsh Vegetation (Halimione portulacoides (L.) Aell. and various grasses), whilst engaged in survey work on behalf of the Suffolk Trust for Nature Conservation at Barthorp's Creek, Hollesley, near Woodbridge, on 17th July, 1971. This area is managed as a nature reserve under a special agreement with the Home Office. (It is intended to publish the füll results of the survey in this journal at a future date.) D. lineare has, in fact, been recorded from at least one of the coastal Essex Naturalists' Trust reserves. Morley (1899), en passant, noted that the species was almost confined to the east coast of Essex and Kent, and stated that he had been expecting to discover the species in Suffolk for some time. Apparently he did not succeed in doing so, and it seems likely that this is the first published record for the county. (There are only two specimens representing the species in the Morley collection. Both are mounted on the same card. They bear no date, and are almost certainly non-Suffolk specimens which Morley acquired from another collector. Unfortunately, the writing on the data label is indecipherable.) (1)
(2) Helichus substriatus (Mueller). (DRYOPIDAE.) Four examples of this very scarce, long-legged, powerfully clawed insect were found clinging to the underside of a submerged
Suffolk NaturaI Iiistory, Vol. 16, Part 4
plank in a fairly fast-moving Stretch of the River Fynn at Rushmere St. Andrew near Ipswich, on 1 Ith April, 1961. Although it is referred to on the O.S. map as a river, the Fynn at this point is little more than a stream, with a depth varying between about 15 cms. (on the stony shallows), and almost a metre (in the deeper, more silted pools). A further visit was made to the locality on 26th August, 1971. Despite a careful search, however, Helichus could not be found in any of its stages. The species does not appear to have been previously recorded in the county. (3) Dorcatoma serra Panzer. (ANOBIIDAE.) Five species of the genus Dorcatoma are accorded a place on the British List. Of these, one—punctulata Mulsant—has no good claim to inclusion (A. A. Allen in litt.). Two of the species— chrysomelina Sturm and flavicornis (Fabricius)—are of local occurrence in south-eastern England (including the London area), often being found together in the red, well-rotted, wood of old trees (especially Quercus). Of the two remaining members of the genus, dresdensis Herbst is the rarest, being recorded by Joy (1932), from only Berkshire and Norfolk, whilst serra Panzer is extremely scarce, Mr. A. A. Allen only having noted some half dozen British records. Both the two last named species inhabit fungi growing on trees, and unless suitable-looking fungi are collected and taken home, they are rarely encountered. D. chrysomelina is the only member of the genus Standing on the Suffolk List. It was placed there originally on the strength of a specimen taken in a window by the Rev. W. Kirby—a record which dates from around the end of the eighteenth Century (vide Morley, 1899 p. 74). This record is presumably the basis upon which Stephens quoted "Barham" as a locality for chrysomelina in his "Manual" (1839), since Kirby, as is well known, was rector of Barham from 1796 until his death in 1850. Whether Kirby ever took more than the single specimen originally reported is a matter for conjecture, and is probably likely to remain so, since none of Kirby's specimens in the British Museum (Natural History) bear any data. In 1936, this ancient record was still awaiting confirmation (Elliott, E. A., 1936), and as far as I am aware, has not been confirmed since this date. It is especially pleasing, however, to be able to record the occurrence of a second Dorcatoma species in the county. Whilst collecting on the edge of Bentley Long Wood, near Ipswich, on 13th February, 1972, a large reddish-brown fungus (Fistulina hepatica (Hudson) Fries.?) was found growing on a live Ash (Fraxinus). On breaking the very soggy fungus open, a number of different insect larvae were noted, some of which were almost certainly those of the Melandryid Orchesia micans (Panzer). A piece of the fungus was retained in a polythene bag, whilst the
FOUR SPECIES OF COLEOPTERA
reminder was carefully replaced at the base of the tree. In mid-May, a species of Dorcatoma began to emerge from the now bone-dry fungus. A short series was retained for determination and study, whilst the rest of the beetles together with the remains of the fungus were taken back to the wood on 3Ist May and replaced at the base of the Ash tree from which the fungus had originated. The distinctions in this genus are rather fine and comparative; lt IS important therefore to have securely named material for comparison. This I did not have, and as the Morley collection was also madequate, representatives of the Dorcatoma were sent to Mr. A. A. Allen, who subsequently determined them as serra. It is almost certain that this represents a new record for the County. Mr. Allen (in litt.), suggests that since no representatives of any of the genus were taken by Morley and his associates, the genus must be really very rare in Suffolk. (There are in fact a number of insects which seem to avoid the eastern seaboard and yet are not scarce around London and the Thames Valley areaâ€”the present genus may possibly represent a further example of this kind of distribution.) (4) Phloeotrya vaudoueri Mulsant. (SERROPALPIDAE.) A specimen of this very local, wood-boring insect was taken from beneath the bark of a cut Oak log in a woodpile at Shrubland Park, Barham, near Ipswich, on 4th July, 1970. On 18th July, a second specimen was found in the same spot, this time under the bark of an Elm log (Ulmus sp.) Mr. C. Barham of Ipswich reared adults of this species from larvae taken from a dead Birch trunk (Betula sp.), in Staverton Park, Butley in May, 1960. These records of Phloeotrya would appear to be the first published for the County. Buck (1954), records this species as being found in Oak, Beech, Ash, and Hornbeam. The occurrence of the beetle in Elm and Birch is interesting, therefore, although most lignicolous Coleoptera normally attached to a specific species of tree are at times found in other species. (It is important to note that the British species of Phloeotrya is now accepted to be vaudoueri Mulsant, and not rufipes Gyllenhal as stated in most British catalogues and literature on Coleoptera v 0vide Allen, A. A., 1970).) Acknowledgements I am extremely grateful to Mr. A. A. Allen for much helpful correspondence concerning the genus Dorcatoma, and for determming specimens of D. serra for me. I should also like to thank Mr. C. Barham for checking his records and kindly allowing me to include his record of Phloeotrya. My thanks also go to the Curator and Mr. F. W. Simpson of the Ipswich Museum
Suffolk Natural History, Vol. 16, Part 4
for allowing me to study the Morley collection and diaries. Finally, I am indebted to Lord de Saumarez and Mr. A. R. Buxton for kindly allowing me to study on their estates at Barham and Bentley respectively. References Allen, A. A. (1970). Phloeotrya vaudoueri Muls. not P. rufipes Gyll. (Col., Serropalpidae), a British species. Entomologist's Mon Mag. 106, 189. Buck, F . D . (1954). Handbooks for the Identification of British Insectsâ€” Coleoptera vol. V, part 9, Royal Entomological Society. Elliott, E. A. (1936). Critical notes on our beetles. Trans. Suffolk Nat. Soc. 3, 121-8. Joy, N . H . (1932). A Practical Handbook of British Beetles. Witherby. Morley, C. (1899). The Coleoptera of Suffolk. Plymouth. Nash, D . R. (1972). Recent captures of some u n c o m m o n beetles in Suffolk, including two species probably new to t h e County List. Entomologist's Mon. Mag. 108, 85-6. Pope, R . D . (1968). A preliminary survey of the Coleoptera of Redgrave and L o p h a m Fens. Trans. Suffolk Nat. Soc. 14, 25-40, 189-207. Stephens, J. F. (1839). A Manual of British Coleoptera. Longmans.
David Ridley Nash, 266 Colchester Road, Lawford, near Manningtree, Essex.