Arge pagana (Panzer, 1797)

Arge pagana

One of the yellow and black species. The pronotum, tegulae and parts of the legs are suffused with black. Wings more or less smoky.
The variation in the degree of dark markings gives two subspecies in Britain. The paler stephensii form has more extensive yellowing on the labrum, middle and hind coxae, femora and tibiae and sometimes upper mesopleural parts, pronotum and mesonotal lobes. The darker pagana form has head, thorax and legs entirely black. It is suspected that the two forms maybe separate species but further study is required.

Larvae feed on roses and are difficult to distinguish from Arge ochropus. The scar in the rose stem left by the ovipositing has a double row of cells in pagana and only a single row in ochropus.


Status: Locally common

Distribution: England, Wales

Flight period: May to September

Plant associations: Rosa spp. (roses)


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.