Pygmy Backswimmer - Plea minutissima

    Alt Name
    Plea leachi

    This is a small (2.5 mm), but sturdy bug and is almost a scale model of the Water Boatman, though its outline is higher and more compact. It is a good swimmer, and as the name indicates it swims on its back, with the silvery reflecting air bubble on the belly upward.

    Identification difficulty

    Occurs in a wide range of aquatic habitats including ponds, lakes and slow moving rivers.

    When to see it

    All year round.

    Life History

    It hunts for Water Fleas and other small animals.

    UK Status

    Widespread and fairly frequent in England and Wales.

    VC55 Status

    Fairly frequent in Leicestershire and Rutland.

    Leicestershire & Rutland Map

    MAP KEY:

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

    UK Map