Sesiidae : Sesiinae
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Photo © Richard Melarange,  Bishops Stortford, Hertfordshire (24/06/17)

Similar Herts & Middlesex Species
Red-tipped Clearwing
Synanthedon formicaeformis
Large Red-belted Clearwing
Synanthedon culiciformis
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Red-belted Clearwing
Synanthedon myopaeformis

(Borkhausen, 1789) 379 / 52.011

General Comments:
Widespread and usually numerically common.

Formerly regarded as extremely rare, but since the creation and widescale availability of artificial pheromone lures for clearwing species it has become apparent that the moth is widespread and numerically common - and almost certainly has always been so. Almost all neglected apple trees in both counties, including in central London, will support this moth.

Hertfordshire Notes: A long-term Hertfordshire resident, the Red-belted Clearwing was included by J. F. Stephens for Hertford in Illustrations of British Entomology : 143, published in 1828). The 1937 county list records Hertford (Stephens), Haileybury (3 specimens in 1897), Cheshunt, Hitchin, St Albans (1916) Letchworth (1916) and near Broxbourne. Later, Foster (1942) adds Felden (1941) and Broxbourne [Woods, late 1930s]. This is another species that has become relatively easy to record because it responds well to artificial pheromone lures; additionally it is very easily recorded by looking for empty pupal cases protruding from trunks and major branches of old apple trees towards the end of June; the pupae usually remain evident for several days. The moth does not appear to like young or healthy trees and in Hertfordshire it has been found only on diseased or dying larger branches of apple trees (or in trunks of diseased trees). It is, as a consequence, only locally distributed in the county, yet nevertheless is probably under-recorded. Andrew Wood has commented that when he surveyed apple trees along the Lea between Ware and Hertford in 2005 he found it on every tree bar one and that was a young one. It should be added that this moth poses no threat to orchards - its presence is a consequence of diseased trees not a cause of them. However, the removal of old orchards and the 'tidying' of those that are retained poses a threat to the longer-term presence of this moth in the county and the retention of older trees with dead and dying branches is urged in areas where this is acceptable. It is of interest that we have no records from our native Crab Apple.

Middlesex Notes: Moderately widespread, and recorded easily to artificial pheromone lures.

Recorded in 27 (66%) of 41 10k Squares.
First Recorded in 1900.
Last Recorded in 2024.
Additional Stats

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List Species Records   [Show All Latest]
Latest 5 Records
Date#VC10k Area
20/06/2024121TQ28 - Hendon / Hampstead / Camden
19/06/2024221TQ09 - Watford / Rickmansworth
23/07/2023120TL11 - Harpenden / Wheathampstead
07/07/2023120SP90 - Berkhamsted
07/07/2023521TQ09 - Watford / Rickmansworth
Show Details | 1990 to 2023 | 2000 to 2023 | Graph Key
Express Record Red-belted Clearwing
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Copyright © Lepidoptera UK 2024

VC20 VC21 VC21 VC20
Click Map for Details
Forewing: 9-11mm.
Flight: June-Aug
Foodplant:   Apple
Red List: Least Concern (LC)
GB Status: Common
Former Status: Nationally Scarce B
Verification Grade:  Adult: 2
 Immature Adult   [Show Flight Weeks]
© 2024 NOLA®; Database using MapMate® Digital Maps © Bartholomew 2010. Design © Jim Wheeler 2024
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