Scaeva selenitica

Scaeva selenitica (Meigen, 1822)

Biology & ecology:

The larva feeds on aphids on Pine Pinus sp. and Spruce Picea sp. A puparium has been found under the bark of Spruce. Records that make reference to habitat most frequently specify woodland (including both deciduous and coniferous), although open habitats, such as chalk grassland, are also mentioned. In the south of England this species is mainly associated with Pinus on heathland. Adults are often seen visiting flowers, such as white umbels, along woodland rides and edges and males hover in clearings.

Distribution:

Scarce but widely scattered. Whilst Stubbs & Falk (1983) state that it is at least a partial migrant, Falk (1991) argues that it is resident. There have been several very early spring records recently that suggest over-wintering by adults. It is quite possible that a resident population receives reinforcement by migration from the continent.

Status & conservation:

The frequency of occurrence is very variable but field experience suggest that it has been more frequent in recent years.

Recorded from 379 hectads since 1990.