Wing length 6.5 to 10.5 mm. This species is black with lemon markings. It is similar to the more common Xanthogramma pedissequum but the sharply defined narrow triangular marking on T2 and the predominantly orange legs help to distinguish this species. There on no black markings on the hind legs of this species.
It is generally found in grassy places such as meadows, coastal grazing marsh, large gardens and woodland rides, and is frequently associated with dry grassland on chalk and limestone.
April to July with a peak in May.
The larvae have been found under turf and stones, and in Lasius nests, where it was once claimed they were fed by worker ants. In fact, it is more likely that they feed on ant-attended root aphids.
This is much the less frequent of the two main Xanthogramma species, and whilst widely scattered over the southern half of Britain north to Lancashire, it remains rather scarce. The majority of records are from downland in southern England.
Uncommon in Leicestershire and Rutland. The Broughton Astley record of 22nd April is only the third record for VC55.
Leicestershire & Rutland Map
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Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015