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Dasytes virens (Marsham, 1802)

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POLYPHAGA Emery, 1886

CLEROIDEA Latreille, 1802

DASYTIDAE Laporte, 1840

DASYTINAE Laporte, 1840

Dasytes Paykull, 1799

Widespread and generally common in warmer southern parts of Europe from the Pyrenees to Greece but more local and scarce further north where it extends into the UK and southernmost parts of Sweden, also known from Algeria, Morocco and Iran and extending east into Asia Minor and Western Russia. In the UK it is very local and generally scarce in South Eastern and Central England and South Wales. Adults are active from May until July or August but are occasionally recorded much earlier or later; the usual overwintering stage is the pupa but adults occasionally eclose in late summer or autumn as they have been recorded in all months. The usual habitat is open woodland, wooded parkland and scrub but adults fly well and they often occur on nearby grassland etc., they feed on pollen and nectar and often visit flowers, especially thistles, various umbels and blossom, and they may often be found on hawthorn in the spring. Mating pairs may be seen during spring and early summer and females oviposit among bark or decaying wood. Larvae develop through the summer, they predate larvae of other saproxylic insects etc., and pupate under bark or among wood from mid-summer. Adults are diurnal and easily found by beating or sweeping flowers or foliage in open and warm situations, they also occur in flight-interception traps placed near suitable trees, and despite the species scarcity, they usually occur in numbers.

3.8-4.5mm. Elongate and rather narrow with the forebody narrower than the elytra across the shoulders, dorsal surface with fine recumbent pubescence as well as fine erect setae, black with a dull green or metallic grey lustre, antennae black with one or more basal segments at least in part pale, femora black, tibiae and tarsi yellowish (tibiae entirely black in var. nigripes Schilsky, 1894). Head about as wide as the pronotum, vertex evenly convex and finely and densely punctured between large convex eyes (larger in males), temples long and converging, clypeus depressed and finely and sparsely punctured, Antennae inserted anteriorly, 11-segmented with segments 5-10 weakly serrate (segments 9 & 10 2-3X longer than wide), longer and narrower in males. Pronotum slightly transverse, at most 1.25X wider than long, widest about the middle and narrowed to obtuse angles, surface evenly convex, without basal impressions, surface evenly and rather densely punctured throughout (sometimes confluent towards the base and lateral margins), usually  with a variable smooth longitudinal median strip in males. Elytra elongate (>2X longer than wide) and dilated from rounded shoulders to a continuous apical margin, usually more strongly dilated in females, without reflexed epipleura but with a ridge under the humeri, surface densely and in places rugosely punctured, without striae although the pubescence often runs in longitudinal lines, giving the impression of striae. Legs long and slender. Tarsi 5-segmented, claws finely serrated.

Dasytes virens 1

Dasytes virens 1

Dasytes virens 2

Dasytes virens 2

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