Sunday, 31 July 2016

Sawfly Spotted.

I espied quite a colourful insect in the greenhouse today or at least it was so when in flight. When static and with its wings folded the red flashes on its abdomen weren't visible and it was a fairly boring brown. What was very evident in its resting state was the long needle like projection from its abdomen. It looked as if it could inflict a rather severe sting. However it transpires what I was looking at was the ovipositor of a female horntail or giant wood wasp. These sawflies do not bite or sting and can be spotted from May until August. They deposit their eggs, (two or three), in the trunks of trees. Depending on conditions they complete their life cycle in one or two years. Hopefully this specimen does not decide to lay its eggs in the wooden structure of the greenhouse.


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