Records from Worcestershire Recorders Committee March 2014 to February 2015
Worcestershire Recorders Committee meets six times each year and at the end of every meeting we receive reports on any notable records from the previous two months. This short article is based on these reports. Many of the items have been described separately and in more detail in the Worcestershire Record but it is interesting to bring them together to appreciate how many significant records there are. Not all of them are from committee members and there will be many more from the wider membership that have not reached the committee.
Tony Simpson noted Agonopteryx atomella on Genista tinctoria and Gelechia nigra on Aspen. Neither of these species had been recorded in the county since 1970.
John Tilt reported the Marsh Fritillary Eurodryas aurinia at Trench Wood though it is thought this was probably a release by a butterfly breeder.
Martin Skirrow found an Essex Skipper Thymelicus lineola near his home near Berrow where it had been absent for many years. He also reported the micro moth Depressaria badiella which has a very scattered distribution, mainly in the southern half of England.
Gary Farmer reported a Peacock butterfly Inachis io. Not, one might think, anything very notable. However, this was seen on Christmas Day!
Geoff Trevis had found the nomad bee Nomada lathburiana during a survey at Worcester University. This is currently RDB3 though it has been increasing its range and should perhaps be down rated. Pound Green Common proved of considerable interest for aculeate hymenoptera and among the species recorded were the ant Myrmica lobicornis, the sawfly Hemichroa australis and the uncommon nomad bee Nomada striata.
Rosemary Winnall reported that Jane Scott had found a colony of the solitary bee Colletes hederae near the library in Stourport-on-Severn. This is very significant in that during its gradual spread north it had been found in Gloucestershire and then in Staffordshire, having apparently jumped Worcestershire! Rosemary also noted a buff-tailed bumblebee Bombus terrestris flying with full pollen baskets on 17th December 2014.
The records for diptera came from Mick Blythe whose work at Wyre Forest and Upton Warren has been outstanding and has resulted in many records of rare species and species new to Worcestershire. During the last year he reported 17 species coming into these categories of which two were of special interest – Prionocera subserricornis (Tipulidae) RDB2 and Empis limata RDB1.
Harry Green found the longhorn beetle Agapanthia villosoviridescens.
Martin Skirrow reported the darkling beetle Prionychus melanarius RDB2.
Rosemary Winnall produced a report of the rugged oil beetle Meloe rugosus from Caroline Roseman at Rochford.
Harry Green found the Aspen leaf hopper Populocerus populi.
Rosemary Winnall reported on the record of the Cream Coloured Ladybird Harmonia quadripunctata found by Jane Scott.
Gary Farmer had found a leaf hopper Iassus scutellaris on Elm at North Littleton and Hill Court Farm. The record was to be confirmed by the national expert as this hopper is very rare and had previously been found only in Cambridgeshire, Surrey, Sussex and Kent. He had also found Lesne’s earwig at Hill Court Farm and in the church car park near Grafton Wood.
Tony Simpson found the Cramp-ball fungus weevil Platyrhinus resinosus at Blackhouse Wood. The species is Nb with a distribution in a band from the Tyne to the Severn with scattered records in further south, especially Kent.
Mike Averill had successfully identified scorpion flies Panorpa sp. using the details by Martin Matthews in The Gloucestershire Mecopteran, reproduced with permission in Worcestershire Record 36, November 2014.
Harry Green recorded Nigma walckenaeri on ivy in his garden. This is a rare species generally confined to south-east England.
Rosemary Winnall reported the finding of the Strawberry Spider Araneus alsine by Jane Scott at Postenplains and at another new site in Wyre Forest by herself. Again a rare spider with a scattered distribution in the midlands, south Wales and northern Scotland.
Rosemary Winnall found small flowered catchfly Silene gallica in Wyre Forest, just on the Shropshire side of the county boundary.
Bert Reid reported Helianthemus nummularium x appenium = H. sulphureum a hybrid rockrose and Phytolacca acinosa Indian pokeweed whilst he and Terry Knight added Eleusine Africana African-yard grass from a site at Barnards Close, Evesham.
Rosemary Winnall found Clavaria tenuipes at her home at Willow Bank, Fomes fomentarius from New Parks, Wyre Forest and Cortinarius violaceus from a few sites in Wyre Forest.
The committee is always interested to hear of unusual species or other records of unusual behaviour so if you have anything to report just let one of the committee members know. We still hope you would write up your own report for Worcestershire Record as well!
Note: Geoff Trevis is current Chairman of Worcestershire Recorders Committee.