Cheilosia variabilis (Panzer, 1798)
Biology & ecology:
The larva tunnels the roots of Common Figwort Scrophularia nodosa and Water Figwort S. auriculata. Adults are usually found in damp woodland rides or similar lush, wooded locations, and have been seen visiting the flowers of Scrophularia sp. The males, which are distinctive because of their large size, elongate form and long, dark wings, are commonly found basking on sun-lit leaves.
Most records are from sites below an altitude of 200 metres. This species occurs widely in lowland locations but is evidently a mainly southerly species that is most abundant east a line between the Tees and the Severn.
Status & conservation:
No obvious trend.
Recorded from 863 hectads since 1990.