Woods Mill Bioblitz: Beetles

Posted by Graeme Lyons , Wednesday, 5 September 2018 08:08

Wow! That was full on. The Woods Mill bioblitz was very exciting. The numbers are not all in but I got to about 525 species and didn't quite make it for 24 hours, it was about 21 hours (I had been awake for 32 hours by the end). I slept for 16 hours after, never done anything like that before. I am very happy with the results. It's gonna take a while to pull it together so I am going to do it in bite -size chunks. Obviously starting with the most important taxa, the beetles. Thanks to Lois, James and Alex for their help. By the end of it my back had gone, so pond-netting and turning logs over was much appreciated!

I recorded 43 species and amazingly, 20 of them were new site records. Although Woods Mill is our fourth most well-recorded reserve, it suffers from having no designations and being a lower priority from all the SSSIs we manage. I have never done a full invert survey there despite doing a great deal of casual recording. Out of these, two new species were recorded with conservation status being Astenus immaculatus and Tachyporus formosus (both found by suction sampler). 

The highlight though was the two riffle beetles I pulled out of the river. I have never seen a riffle beetle before, probably because I don't do a lot of pond-netting in flowing water. I have seen 1249 beetles in the UK and it took me this long to see a single riffle beetle. Then I pulled five out (of two species) in one net in a place I have worked for over a decade! I was rather excited. Above is Elmis aenea and below is Oulimnius tuberculatus on the left and Elmis aenea on the right. The long legs and large claws help the beetles to cling on in flowing streams, quite a different approach to most aquatic beetles, these guys crawl rather than swim. I must admit, I had thought they would be a bit bigger, the are both around 2 mm. Much of the excitement from the bioblitz came from the valley field close to or in the stream.

Other oddities in this lot include the first record of 7-spot Ladybird since 2007 but it's nice to see that of the 23 species already recorded, all have been recorded this century with the oldest record being Anthocomus rufus in 2005. This brings the Woods Mill beetle list to 312 species meaning I recorded 13.7% of the site's species during the bioblitz. I have very few stock photos of the remaining species but here is a Hypera zoilus (love this tank of a weevil) and Anthocomus rufus. Next up, molluscs! Oh, I almost forgot, I am trying a new name for my blog, what do you think? It's the same approach (a snarky pun with double meaning) but with a focus on sharing knowledge. So not a change in direction but perhaps something that reflects more what I am doing here.

Species Last record
16-spot Ladybird 2016
22-spot Ladybird 2017
24-spot Ladybird 2014
7-spot Ladybird 2007
Abax parallelepipedus 2011
Anthocomus rufus 2005
Apion frumentarium 2016
Astenus immaculatus (Notable) New
Astenus lyonessius New
Bembidion guttula 2018
Bembidion properans 2014
Catapion seniculus New
Cream-spot Ladybird 2017
Crepidodera aurata 2014
Crepidodera plutus 2006
Curculio venosus New
Curtonotus aulicus New
Elmis aenea New (and for me!)
Haliplus lineatocollis New
Harlequin Ladybird 2015
Hazel Leaf-roller New
Hypera zoilus 2016
Hyphydrus ovatus 2014
Nephus redtenbacheri New
Noterus clavicornis 2012
Oulimnius tuberculatus New (and for me!)
Paederus littoralis 2013
Paradromius linearis 2015
Pine Ladybird New
Protapion fulvipes 2016
Psylliodes chrysocephala New
Pterostichus madidus 2018
Rhyzobius litura 2016
Rhyzobius lophanthae New
Silpha atrata New
Sitona hispidulus New
Sitona lepidus New
Sitona lineatus 2016
Sitona sulcifrons New
Tachyporus formosus (Notable A) New
Trechus obtusus New
Viburnum Leaf Beetle 2016
Xantholinus longiventris New

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