Rhogogaster scalaris

    Alternative names
    Rhogogaster viridis

    This common sawfly is one of several similar species. The pterostigma (the coloured mark on the front edge of the wing) is uniformly green or yellow in this species and it has a small black line on side of its thorax. Usually there is a black band along the top of the abdomen.

    Similar Species

    Separating R. viridis and R. chlorosoma can be tricky. Both species have a variable amount of black but R. chlorosoma is generally paler. The best character is the relative length of the pads on the back of the tarsal segments (called pulvilli) - these are about half the length of the following segment in (female) chlorosoma but shorter in viridis. A thin black line in the groove on the side of the thorax is often a good clue for viridis too but not entirely reliable as there is sometimes a trace of a line in chlorosoma too.

    Identification difficulty
    Recording advice

    This species has a red ID rating and unless identified by a known expert you must provide a satisfactory explanation of how it was identified for the record to be accepted.


    Adults visit a range of habitats hunting for small insects on flowers.

    When to see it

    It flies from May to August

    Life History

    The larvae eat a range of plant leaves.

    UK Status

    Widespread and fairly frequent in Britain.

    VC55 Status

    Common 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