Arge melanochra - Narrow-barred Fusehorn

One of two Arge species with a yellow abdomen and a black blotch under the stigma. Widespread in a restricted southern zone to East Anglia with the northernmost record from Lincolnshire at the time of review (Musgrove, 2022). In Arge melanochra the smudge beneath the stigma does not extend right across the wing (not extending beyond the radial cell). The hind femur is black.

Larvae feed individually on hawthorns, though it is not clear whether it has a preference for Crataegus monogyna (hawthorn) or Crataegus laevigata (midland hawthorn). Larvae have 9 pairs of abdominal legs, whereas the similar larva of Arge ustulata has 10 pairs. This species is most often encountered in the south.

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Size: 7 - 8mm.

IUCN Status: Least Concern
GB Rarity Status: None

Distribution: England

Flight period: late May to August

Plant associations: Crataegus spp.. Hawthorns (Stritt, 1960)


Benson, R.B., 1952. Handbooks for the Identification of British Insects. Hymenoptera, Symphyta, Vol 6, Section 2(a-c), Royal Entomological Society, London

Liston A, Knight G, Sheppard D, Broad G, Livermore L (2014) Checklist of British and Irish Hymenoptera - Sawflies, ‘Symphyta’. Biodiversity Data Journal 2: e1168.

Musgrove, A.J. 2022. A review of the status of sawflies of Great Britain - Phase 1: families other than Tenthredinidae. Natural England, unpublished

Stritt, W. 1960: Die bisher unbekannte Larve der Blattwespe Arge melanochroa Gmel. (Hym., Symph.). - Beiträge zur naturkundlichen Forschung in Südwestdeutschland, Karlsruhe 19(1): 58-59.