Melangyna umbellatarum

Melangyna umbellatarum (Fabricius, 1794)

Nomenclature:

Syrphus umbellatarum Fabricius in Coe (1953).

Biology & ecology:

The larva is aphidophagous, and appear to have a clear preference for Cavariella aphids on white umbels. Adults are usually found in or near woodland, especially on the flowers of Hogweed sphondylium and Wild Angelica Angelica sylvestris. Males hover high over paths and clearings.

Distribution:

Widely distributed but scarce south of a line between the Ribble and Humber Estuaries. It is much scarcer in northern England, but extends into northern Scotland. This species can be confused with M. compositarum and M. labiatarum and is very difficult to separate from M. ericarum, so care is needed.

Status & conservation:

This species appeared to show signs of decline up to about 2000, but appears to have picked up more recently. Field experience certainly suggests that it has become more frequent in recent years.

Recorded from 447 hectads since 1990.