How to identify longhorn beetles

Here are 12 longhorn beetles to look out for when they are searching for places to meet partners and lay their eggs.

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black and yellow longhorn
All illustrations by Felicity Rose Cole

 

1. Black and yellow longhorn Rutpela maculata

13–20mm. Slow-moving wasp mimic. Visits wood and hedgerow flowers.

 

 

2. Wasp beetle Clytus arietis

6–15mm. Abundant, fast-moving wasp mimic. Frequently basks on sunlit logpiles, stumps and leaves.

 

 

3. Two-banded longhorn Rhagium bifasciatum

12–22mm. Deciduous or coniferous woodland, often visiting flowers such as hawthorn or bramble.

 

 

4. Black-spotted longhorn Rhagium mordax

13–23mm. Deciduous or mixed woods, often on hawthorn blossom. Can be very approachable.

 

 

5. Welsh oak longhorn Pyrrhidium sanguineum

6–15mm. Rare and local in southern oak woods; reported most often from stacks of newly cut oak.

 

 

6. Rufous-shouldered longhorn Anaglyptus mysticus

8–15mm. Woodland clearings and hedges; visits hawthorn blossom.

 

 

7. Tanbark borer Phymatodes testaceus

6–18mm. Parks and open woods. Feeds on oak, especially in logpiles; often attracted to lighted windows.

 

 

8. Lesser thorn-tipped longhorn Pogonocherus hispidus

4–6mm. Usually on holly or ivy. Very small and hard to spot against bark.

 

 

9. Small poplar-borer Saperda populnea

9–15mm. On aspen or poplars. Basks on bark of mature trees or nearby vegetation.

 

 

10. Black-striped longhorn Stenurella melanura

6–10mm. Open woodland; feeds on flowers in clearings. Male has less extensive black on wing-cases.

 

 

11. Larch longhorn Tetropium gabrieli

8–18mm. Confined to larch woods; not often seen by day. Look for it on larch stumps or bark in evening.

 

 

12. Pine-stump borer Asemum striatum

8–23mm. Coniferous woodland, especially in Scotland. Search for it on dead conifer stumps at dusk.

 

 

There is a Longhorn Beetle Recording Scheme in place to encourage recording of this group and to manage the records, to find out more click here.

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