Bibio lanigerus


Length 5 to 8 mm. This is one of a group known as March Flies. The adult males have large bulbous eyes. It is identified from some similar species by the fact that it has reddish legs, but Bibio varipes can look very similar.

Similar Species

This species most resembles Bibio varipes but averages smaller in size (wing length up to 6mm) and the male hind basitarsis is only about 3 times as long as broad (4 times as long in varipes). Females tend to have a paler stigma than varipes but can be very difficult to separate, though the fore-margin of the wing is straighter where it passes the stigma (rather concave in varipes). Like varipes, the female legs are mainly red. Males have the hind tibiae and tarsi orange and it does not seem to produce the dark-legged form seen in varipes.


Identification difficulty


When to see it

April and May.

Life History

The larvae are herbivorous eating roots or scavenging on dead leaves. Some adults do not eat at all and are quite short-lived, others feed on Hawthorn pollen.

UK Status

Widespread and fairly common in England.

VC55 Status

Fairly common in Leicestershire and Rutland.

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Leicestershire & Rutland Map


Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

UK Map