Target Species

This page lists some of the species that NatureSpot and/or our county recorders would like NatureSpot users to look for and record. They will generally be species that are under-recorded or overlooked in Leicestershire and Rutland but should be possible to find with targeted searching based on habitat and/or season.


Group Species Details
Fungi Xylaria carpophila (Beechmast Candlesnuff)

Found by Graham Calow, Steve Mathers, Kate Nightingale, Saharima Roenisch, Alan Cann.

More records always welcome!

Flies Norellia spinipes

Found by David Gould, Alan Cann. More records needed.

A Scathophagid associated with Daffodils, best searched for in spring. The following link is a little dated but includes some useful information and photos.

Old call for records

Moths Coleophora laricella

The case-bearing larvae of this micro-moth feed on Larch in the spring. The adults fly Jun-Jul.

Close-up.   In situ.


Gagea lutea

(Yellow Star-of-Bethlehem)

This is an early (Feb-May) shy-flowering plant of stream-sides and damp woodlands on base-rich soils. Currently only known from one location in east Leicestershire. But was previously found in Charnwood and Rutland. Could there be other populations elsewhere in our counties?

The ribbed underside of the leaf-blade with hooded leaf-tip are useful ID features on non-flowering specimens. (Well illustrated in this photo.)

More info.


Stellaria pallida

(Lesser Chickweed)

This plant is like a small version of Common Chickweed but with yellow-green leaves and no petals, 1-3 anthers (usually 2) and 2-3mm sepals. It flowers Mar-Apr then dries up and fades away. Habitat: Dunes and sandy waysides. It is a plant that could crop up in urban areas around tree bases, worn footpaths, waste ground, etc.
Galls Bucculatrix cristatella

Feeding signs and cocoon on Yarrow. Larvae occur Apr-May and again in July.

Slugs Limacus flavus (Yellow Slug)

Was common in VC55 but now replaced by the Irish Yellow Slug. Is it still here? Key ID feature is the yellow keel stripe extends from the tail at least half the length of the slug.

Info sheet

Slugs Ambigolimax nyctelius (Balkan Three-banded Slug)

Like the Greenhouse Slug but with three clear longitudinal bands. Possible sighting in 2017 but not confirmed. Specimen needed for confirmation.

See image.

Galls Rondaniola bursaria (Lighthouse Gall)

Found by Graham Calow.

Diptera gall found Aug-Oct on Ground Ivy. Hairy pillars to 4mm tall on upper leaf surface, changing from green to reddish and later falling off to leave neat round holes.

Galls Parornix devoniella Leaf mines on the leaves of Hazel.
Moths Phyllonorycter platani

Found by Graham Calow & Saharima Roenisch.

Makes very obvious and distinctive mines on Plane trees. July to Nov.

Bees, Wasps, Ants

Colletes hederae

(Ivy Bee)

Now found by several recorders at numerous locations. This species seems to have made a big advance into VC55 in 2018. On Ivy from mid-September to early November.

Ivy Bee Factsheet (pdf)