Sawflies are closely related to bees, wasps and ants - all are in the Hymenoptera family. Sawflies can generally be distinguished from bees and wasps by the lack of a 'waist'. There are around 600 UK species, some large and colourful, others tiny and obscure. A number are known to gardeners as some sawfly larvae feed on common garden plants such as Berberis, Geranium and Solomon's Seal.

Leicestershire and Rutland Resources

A checklist of sawflies species recorded in VC55

Keys and Identification Help

British and Irish Sawflies Facebook Group - very useful site to post images for speedy identification help

British Sawflies - Adam Wright. An Aidgap key to the genera of UK sawflies.

Royal Entomological Society Keys by Benson

Mike Hackston’s insect keys: Symphyta

Checklist of British and Irish Hymenoptera - Sawflies, "Symphyta" by Liston et al

Other Useful Websites and Publications

There isn't currently a popular field guide to sawflies which is probably why they are generally under-recorded.


British Sawflies website - an excellent and expanding resource covering most UK species

ID Guide to Tenthredo Species - a detailed guide to the identification of UK Tenthredo sawflies from the Natural History Musem (free download)

A Beginners Guide to Sawflies - a useful photographic guide to the families, larvae and pest species (free download)

Steven Falk’s Flickr sawfly collection

Tanyptera Project video: Introduction to UK Sawflies



If you know of other websites or books that you would recommend, do let us know:

Recording Schemes

David Nicholls is the VC55 County Recorder for sawflies - davidnicholls125(at)

As with all records, any submissions you make to NatureSpot will be automatically forwarded to both local and national recording schemes.