Meliscaeva auricollis

Description

Though small and dark coloured, the slanting rear border of the yellow crescent marks on tergite 2, particularly in males, help to identify the species. The spring generation tend to be darker bodied than those born later in the year.

Identification difficulty
Habitat

Prefers well-wooded places and is usually found around trees.

When to see it

February to December. This is one of the first hoverflies to appear in the year. A warm day, even in January or February, can bring it out of hibernation.

Life History

Larvae are known to be associated with aphid colonies on shrubs such as Barberry and Broom and on the flowers and stems of umbellifers. The adult hibernates.

UK Status

Fairly frequent in southern England and the Midlands, scarcer 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