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Suffolk Natural History, Vol. 32




A. ASTON I am much indebted to Mr. Nigel P. Wyatt of the Natural History Museum for sending me the data for a fourth Suffolk specimen of the splendid Golden Hoverfly, Callicera spinolae Rondani, which was first announced as British in 1942 by Claude Morley, although an earlier capture was later discovered to have taken place. The first three Suffolk records were: October Ist 1928, Southwold, J. W. Bowhill; September lOth 1942, Brandeston Marshes, Claude Morley; September 1 Ith 1947, Monks Soham, Claude Morley. The fourth Suffolk specimen, which is in the National Collection, originally bore no data but was subsequently labelled by Mr. Ken Smith as follows:- "in box of mixed flies ex. C. Garrett-Jones, who says probably taken Oct. late '40s on pine tree Iken, Suffolk". Mr. Charles Garrett-Jones was an active Suffolk Naturalist and lived at Iken Hall. It will be noted that all these four occurrences were in East Suffolk, but the Standard work on British Hoverflies (Stubbs, 1993) now cites West Suffolk as being the centre of distribution. It will be interesting to trace the occurrences in West Suffolk. "Of the three species of Hoverfly in the Genus Callicera recorded for Britain, C. spinolae is undoubtedly the loveliest," writes Mr. C. O. Hammond (1973). It is also one of the largest of British Hoverflies, with a wing-length of 12-15 mm. The early stages of its life-cycle are apparently unknown, though it is most likely that it breeds in rotten wood. The adult was first described from Italy (1844) and has been noted in Germany. In the United Kingdom sightings have been restricted to East Anglia and would seem to be limited to about 15 specimens from six localities in Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridge. Females have been captured at flowers of ivy or angelica from mid-September to early October, the date being a good indicator of identification. Physical diagnostic features include conspicuous dull bands at the hind margins or tergites 2 and 3, together with obvious fringes of gold hairs. The femora of the female are entirely orange. It would seem that the male has yet to be recorded in Britain. Mr. Hammond describes the flight of a female near the ground as resembling the erratic behaviour of a bee of the genus Andrena. Perhaps these notes may help further occurrences to be observed in Suffolk. References Aston, A. (1958). Third Golden Hoverer. Trans. Suffolk Nat. Soc., 11, 66. Hammond, C. O. (1973). Callicera spinolae Rondani - Extended Range. Entomologist's Record, 85, 22-26. Morley, C. (1942). Golden Hoverer-fly new to Britain. Trans. Suffolk Nat. Soc., 5, 14. Morley, C. (1947). The Second Golden Hoverer. Trans. Suffolk Nat. Soc., 6, 149. Stubbs, A. E. & Falk, S. J. (1993). British Hoverflies. Reading: Brit. Ent. & Nat. Hist. Soc.

Trans. Suffolk Nat. Soc. 32 (1996)



Alasdair Aston, Wake's Cottage, Seiborne, Hampshire GU34 3JH

Some infrequent Microlepidoptera Among the micros that flew to light at Market Hill, Framlingham, this summer was an attractive black and cream species (August 4th), which Dr. J. Langmaid has kindly named for me as Mompha propinquella Stt. Robert Palmer (pers. comm.) also noted it at Santon Downham in 1987-89 and these records for East and West Suffolk are probably the first for over 60 years. Dichrorampha flavidorsana Knaggs, a distinctly local species, arrived on July 3Ist: the only other Suffolk record dates from 1934. Epiblema cirsiana Zell, flew in on July 3Ist. The first definite Suffolk specimen (1948) was identified for me by Mr. S. Wakely (see Transactions 11, 144). Alasdair Aston

Trans. Suffolk Nat. Soc. 32 (1996)

The Golden Hoverfly, Callicera spinolae Rondani  

Aston, A. E.

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