Athalia ancilla - Maiden Tigress

Mostly recorded south-west of a line between the Mersey and Thames, with few records in eastern England. Additional sparse records north to northern Scotland (Musgrove, 2023).

Athalia ancilla has the middle tibia ringed with black apically and the length of the inner spur of the hind tibia is less than the length of the fourth tarsomere. The basal half of veins C+R are yellow.

Associated with wet places. Larvae feed on cruciferous plants such as hedge garlic and mustards.

Jump to other Athalia species

Size: 5-7mm

GB IUCN Status: Least concern
GB Rarity Status: None

Distribution: England, Scotland, Wales

Flight period: May to September

Plant association: Various Brassicaceae including Alliaria petiolata (Garlic Mustard), Brassica (Cabbages), Diplotaxis tenuifolia (Perennial Wall-rocket), Erysimum cheiranthoides (Treacle-mustard), Raphanus raphanistrum (Radish) and Sisymbrium officinale (Hedge Mustard)


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. 2023. A review of the status of sawflies of Great Britain - Phase 2: The Athaliidae and the Tenthredinidae (excluding Nematinae). Natural England, unpublished