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6931 Views 10 Replies Last post: Jul 5, 2010 5:58 PM by Clive Washington RSS
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Jul 2, 2010 8:51 AM

Can anyone identify this please?

It's probably common but I've not seen one before. And now I've found two in my conservatory. I live on the outskirts of Leeds. It is a mainly suburban area but it is in fairly close proximity to woodlands and farmland. It was getting on for 20mm long. Any help would be greatly appreciated. (Don't know if it is a fly or bug etc but I thought I'd start with a post under this section of the forum.)


Thanks,  Steve

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    Jul 2, 2010 9:03 AM (in response to StevenE)
    Re: Can anyone identify this please?
    This is a male Greater Horntail wasp, Urocerus gigas (Hymenoptera: Siricidae). The females are much larger and altogether more impressive as they have a conspicuous ovipositor that protrudes from their behind. The female lays her eggs in standing dead or dying wood of pine trees where the larvae feed and develop. This is their season and we should be getting many more observations over the next few weeks.
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    • Actually I don't think this is Uroceras gigas.  20mm is not nearly long enough - I caught one some years ago and it was much bigger, nearly 40 mm.  Also the back legs should be virtually all yellow, maybe some darkening at the knees, and not as extensively black as this.  Anyone want to take a second look?
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        Jul 2, 2010 1:40 PM (in response to Clive Washington)
        Re: Can anyone identify this please?
        Having very little resources here to work with - basically by mining the UK sawfly checklist and searching for images - my guess would be that this is either an imported specimen of Urocerus californicus or Urocerus augur.  There are some Sirex species that have very similar hind leg colouration (enlargement in some cases) but these all seem to lack the yellow regions behind the head.  Needs a a sawfly expert!
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