Gymnocheta viridis

    Description

    Length 6 to 12 mm. Gymnocheta viridis is a metallic green tachinid fly, its brassy abdomen and thorax are covered by stiff bristly hairs.

    Similar Species

    Gymnocheta viridis is very similar to Chrysosomopsis auratus but this species flies in the summer so can be largely discounted as a confusion species in Spring. They can be distinguished by counting the rows of dorso-central bristles on the thorax behind the suture line. G. viridis has 4 rows whilst C. auratus has 3. (Note: dorso-central bristles are not in the middle of the thorax but midway to the wing bases, the central bristles are acrostichals).

    Identification difficulty
    ID guidance
    • Hairy eyes
    • Strong erect bristles on the abdomen – median discals and margins present
    • Flying in Spring
    • Black palps
    • Thorax and abdomen the same colour - bright metallic green
    Habitat

    Often around woodland edge or other well wooded areas.

    When to see it

    Mainly a springtime species that can be seen from April to early June.

    Life History

    The adults feed on pollen and nectar, whilst the larva feed on caterpillars etc.

    UK Status

    Fairly frequent and widespread in England and Wales, less well recorded elsewhere in Britain.

    VC55 Status

    Fairly frequent in Leicestershire and Rutland

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    Leicestershire & Rutland Map

    MAP KEY:

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

    UK Map