Dolerus anthracinus - Sooty Griever

The correct name for this species has been designated at coracinus. However, renaming anthracinus as coracinus would leave the species currently known as coracinus without a name. Therefore, anthracinus remains the name for this species for now.

Recorded locally but widely, mostly in England with more isolated records in Scotland (including Rum) and Wales (Musgrove, 2023).

An early spring species. Head, body and legs are black with a blue-green tinge. Dark hairs make this species appear darker than other Dolerus species in the field.

In the female, the front lobe of mesonotum has a fine median keel with punctures along the midline. The mesosternum is densely punctured. Wings may not reach the tip of the abdomen.

In males the hairs on the head and thorax are black and the penis valve is diagnostic.

Dolerus anthracinus larvae feed on grasses. In the South East, the species is mainly on chalk grassland.

Jump to other Dolerus species

GB IUCN Status: Vulnerable
Status: None

Distribution: England, Scotland, Wales

Flight period: February to April

Plant associations: Graminaceae (grasses)


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

Harwood, P. 1945: Early appearance of Dolerus anthracinus Klug (Hym., Symphyta). - The Entomologist's Monthly Magazine, Fourth Series, London 81(6): 119

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

Liston, A., Mutanen, M., Heidemaa, M., Blank, S.M., Kiljunen, N., Taeger, A., Viitasaari, M., Vikberg, V., Wutke, S. and Prous, M., 2022. Taxonomy and nomenclature of some Fennoscandian Sawflies, with descriptions of two new species (Hymenoptera, Symphyta). Deutsche Entomologische Zeitschrift69(2).

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 Natural England, unpublished