Not a weevil; more of a scarab or chafer.
Well, I'm torn btween Tropinota hirta (syn. Epicometis hirta) and Oxythyrea funesta, based on general appearance.
This page indicates, as a differentiting character:
'Tropinota kind has no white dots on pronotal'
But I find plenty of images on the web showing a supposed Tropinota hirta with such white spots.
So that confuses me.
Also, I'm not sure the range of either species includes London...
http://www.coleopterist.org.uk/checklist2012.pdf indicates that Oxythyrea funesta is a 'Non-established introduction' (p.131). The same work does not list Tropinota hirta or Epicometis hirta at all.
- http://www.coleopterist.org.uk/checklist.htm (thanks to A. G. Duff for a very useful reference)
Somebody shed some light, please...
According to my beetle book, your specimen should be an Oxythyrea. It's the white spots on the pronotum, but also longer antennae stems, less hairy pronotum, etc. Here is a page that shows photos of these two species side-by-side. For detailed images of Oxythyrea funesta and Tropinota (Epicometis) hirta, please follow those links. I've always found this Russian website useful for its quality images.
I think it's Oxythyrea funesta. I tried to check with some real specimens, but sadly we don't have these two species in the British Synoptic Collection. Because they are not established in Britain, they are not figured in the Handbook for Scarabeidae.
Good work Mike - I have shown it to the UK scarabaeid recorder, Darren Mann (also of the Oxford University Museum Insect Collections) and he confirms Oxythyrea funesta. He is of course interested in the details of the record so please contact me on email@example.com and I will tell you what we need.
It's a fabulous spot - thanks for posting.
Hi chriffer - if you could provide some data to turn this observation into a national record the UK recorder of this group would greatly appreciate this. We will need:
The date you observed this
Where you observed it: name of place and OS Landranger grid ref would be perfect
What flower it was visiting (if you can remember)
Please email this to me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are able.