Coleoptera of note in the Kidderminster area 2014
I spent the season occasionally visiting a couple of my local haunts, Springfield Park (SO87) and Devil’s Spittleful Nature Reserve (SO87), but my main focus concentrated on a 400 metre stretch of River Severn bankside (SO77) that runs alongside Bewdley town centre, downstream towards Stourport. All observations were made at night with a headband torch.
01. Aegialia sabuleti Scarabaeidae (Nationally scarce) 3/5/2014
A riparian species of scarab beetle found on bare river sandbanks on rivers and streams where it feeds on decaying vegetable matter. This species is very local in the south with most records coming from northern England. Found active at night alongside the river in Bewdley.
02. Dorytomus tremulae Curculionidae (Nationally scarce) 22/4/2014
A species of catkin weevil restricted to feeding on Aspen trees, the adults feed on leaves but the larvae develop in the catkins. I found this one active at night on a mature Aspen trunk at Springfield Park, Kidderminster. Also seen on Aspen alongside the River Severn at Bewdley.
03. Dorytomus tortrix Curculionidae (Local) 23/4/2014
Another species of catkin weevil linked to Aspen, I found these in large numbers on Aspen trees in Kidderminster and along the River Severn in Bewdley on 3/5/2014.
04. Xyleborus saxesenii Scolytidae (Local) 3/5/2014
A rather local bark beetle in Worcestershire, I found a number of these on decaying bark on a dead plum tree alongside the river Severn, Bewdley, active at night.
05. Stereocorynes truncorum Curculionidae (Nationally rare) 22/5/2014
A scarce saproxylic weevil that feeds on dead wood and is nocturnal and seldom seen. I found a number of these on an ancient hollow Sycamore tree at night in shaded woodland at the Devil’s Spittleful NR but it is usually linked to hollow oak trees.
Enicmus rugosus Latridiidae. (Nationally scarce) 22/5/2014
I found two of these small scavenger beetles on a bracket fungus on a dead standing oak tree at the Devil’s Spittleful NR. The species feeds on various fungi and slime moulds.
06. Platystomos albinus Anthribidae.(Nationally scarce) 7/6/2014
A fungus weevil from the edge of the River Severn at Bewdley. This is an unusual record as it was found feeding on mouldy wood on a decaying ash bough infested with Cramp ball fungus which is usually a habitat of its sister species Platyrhinus resinosus. Perhaps there is some competition between these two species. Usually this species is linked to fungoid oak. In 2012 John Bingham recorded one on oak on the Shropshire side of the Wyre Forest.
07. Clitostethus arcuatus Coccinellidae (RDB1) 23/5/2014
These species was seen breeding again at Crossley Park and Hurcott Wood and I was delighted to find it on Greater Celandine Chelidonium majus at the base of an old hawthorn tree alongside the River Severn at Bewdley and on honeysuckle in woodland alongside the Devil’s Spittleful NR. Definitely spreading and good to see it doing so well (Whitehead & Brown 2012).
08. Cyanostolus aeneus Monotomidae (Nationally rare) 10/7/2014
A predatory riparian species. I found two of these on the wet section of a log jutting out of shallow water on the River Severn at Bewdley. The log was too old to make a positive identification of the type of wood, but when disturbed the one specimen took flight; I don’t think night flight has been recorded in this species before.
09. Bracteon litorale Carabidae (Nationally scarce) 27/7/2014
I found three specimens of this predatory ground beetle active at night on a bare sandy river bank at Bewdley. This species is usually described as diurnal so this was also an interesting observation.
10. Amara praetermissa Carabidae (Nationally scarce) 27/7/2014
A seed-feeding ground beetle. Previously recorded at the Devil’s Spittleful heath, I recorded this one in 2011 at Hartlebury Common in sandy heathland. I was surprised to also come across this species on dry areas of sand banks along the River Severn at Bewdley. It was regularly seen there during the summer months.
11. Dyschirius aeneus Carabidae (Local) 4/7/2014
This is the black colour variation of the species; there is also a brassy version. A predatory ground beetle linked to species of Bledius (Col., Staphylinidae). I found these on bare sand banks along the River Severn at Bewdley.
Many thanks to John Meiklejohn for his help especially in my early studies. And a big thank you to Paul Whitehead for his help in identifying a lot of these species which has been a big help to me.
Whitehead, P.F. & Brown, A. 2012. Clitostethus arcuatus (Rossi, 1794) (Col., Coccinellidae) breeding in the Kidderminster area of Worcestershire: overwintering strategies and breeding biology. Worcestershire Record 33:20-22
01. Aegialia sabuleti
02. Dorytomus tremulae
03. Dorytomus tortrix.
04. Xyleborus saxesenni
05. Stereocorynes truncorum
06. Platystomos albinus
07. Clitostethus arcuatus in Bewdley.
08. Rhizophagus aeneus
09. Bracteon literale
10. Amara praetermissa
11. Dyschirius aeneus