Platycheirus angustatus


Our most narrowly-built Platycheirus with males that could be overlooked as Melanostoma mellinum in the field until the broadened front legs are seen. It belongs within the clypeatus group with front legs modified in much the same way as other members of the group, though the tergites are much narrower - tergite 3 is usually 1.5 times as long as broad. The male tarsi have distinct dark markings beneath unlike clypeatus and occultus. Separation from europaeus is most difficult. Female angustatus generally have the abdomen very narrow and tapering at the tip, and the spots on tergite 4 often missing. Like the male, the sides of the thorax are brightly shining, much more so than other members of the clypeatus complex.

Similar Species

P. europaeus is most similar species but is larger with a slightly broader build, more heavily dusted thorax sides, slightly different markings beneath the male front tarsi and a broader alula on the wings.

Identification difficulty
Recording advice

Unless identified by a recognised expert, a photo is required and the specimen should be examined with a microscope. In the comments box, state the key or ID method used and describe the size and identifying characters.


Found in a variety of grassy habitats and wetlands.

When to see it

April to September.

Life History

The larvae are aphidophagous in low vegetation, including Winter Wheat.

UK Status

This is a widespread and locally common species in Britain.

VC55 Status

Status in Leicestershire and Rutland not known.

Leicestershire & Rutland Map


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

UK Map

Species profile

Species group:
Records on NatureSpot:
First record:
28/09/2022 (Pochin, Christine)
Last record:
28/09/2022 (Pochin, Christine)

Total records by month

% of records within its species group

10km squares with records

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