Cheilosia vernalis

Cheilosia vernalis (Fallén, 1817)

Biology & ecology:

The larva is thought to tunnel in the stems of Yarrow Achillea millefolium, mayweeds Matricaria sp., Goatsbeard Tragopogon pratensis and sow thistles Sonchus sp. Adults are usually found on low-growing Asteraceae or white umbels in open, flowery situations such as dry grassland, heathland margins, road verges and waste ground. Also in grassy clearings in woodland and in dunes.

Distribution:

Widespread and frequent in southern Britain. Less frequent in the north, with records extending to northern Scotland.

Status & conservation:

There is some evidence of a decline in occurrence from most parts of Britain over the past 35 years. This change may be an artefact of recorder effort because relatively few modern recorders report the Cheilosini.

Recorded from 653 hectads since 1990.