Arge Berberidis – New Garden Species

A bit of a surprise recording this one. Our third sawfly species confirmed so far in the garden and a bit of an oddity. It’s only been recorded in the country since around 2002, and it has already spread over much of England and Wales. It is heavily associated (as it’s name would suggest) with certain Barberry species, however it’s larvae are also associated with Mahonia species.

The area is not really known for Barberry, although we have noted a small patch of Mountain Grape (Mahonia aquifolium) down in our local nature reserve, we have no idea how this non-native got there in the first place, likely a garden escapee. We did pop down the reserve to see if we could spot any of their brightly coloured larvae on its foliage but we found nothing.

The little guy below just plopped itself down on a Oxeye Daisy leaf for a rest, clearly to tired to worry about our fussing around it.

You can see from its damaged wing that this fella has been through the wars a little, but was still capable of strong flight and soon was on its way. The yellow tip to the abdomen we believe is characteristic of this species. Either way we’ve not seen anything quite like this in the garden to date, so its a nice addition to the list.

Arge berberidis – 25th July 2022

DC – 04/08/2022

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