The Empria are characterised within the Allantinae by the following features. The abdomen is mostly black with a pair of silver/grey flecks on the basal tergites either side of the midline. The malar gap is at least half as long as the width of an antennal socket. The second antennal segment is shorter than the malar gap. The pedicel is as wide as or wider than long. The mesepisternum is smooth and unsculptured on the dorsal half.

There are 56 species of Empria globally with the majority being found in the palaearctic region. In addition there are known to be several species as yet undescribed. Fifteen species occur in Britain of which 10 also occur in Ireland. Most are widely distributed though Empria fletcheri and Empria alpina appear to have a montane, northerly distribution. With a few exceptions, Empria are difficult to separate to species level. Empria fletcheri and Empria immersa can be separated from the others by having yellow on the hind femurs.

The larvae are free feeders on members of the rosaceae family and birch and willows.

Species list:

Immersa Group: Penis valve with a long, apical projection.

Empria improba Cresson, 1880 =Empria camtschatica Forsius, 1928

Empria fletcheri (Cameron, 1878)

Empria immersa (Klug, 1818)

Candida Group: Hind wing without cell M. Male penis valve with several leaf-like lobes on the valviceps. Associated with birches.

Empria candidata (Fallén, 1808)

Hungarica Group: Penis valve with a small beak-like extension on the valviceps near the apex on the opposite side to the valvura - "bird-like"

Empria pumila (Konow, 1896)

Liturata Group: Penis valve with a beak-like extension on the valviceps near the apex on the opposite side to the valvura - "bird-like"

Empria liturata (Gmelin, 1790)

Longicornis Group: Penis valve with the apex of the valviceps curving back towards the valvura - "axe-like"

Empria alector Benson, 1938

Empria alpina Benson, 1938

Empria basalis Lindqvist, 1968

Empria longicornis (Thomson, 1871)

Empria minuta Lindqvist, 1968

Empria tridens (Konow, 1896)

Pallimacula Group: Penis valve with a dome-like extension on the valviceps apically

Empria pallimacula (Serville, 1823)

Ungrouped: Penis valve with a beak-like extension on the valviceps near the apex on the opposite side to the valvura - "bird-like"

Empria excisa (Thomson, 1871)

Empria parvula (Konow, 1892)

Empria sexpunctata (Serville, 1823)


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

Heidemaa, M. and Viitasaari, M., 1999. Taxonomy of the Empria hungarica species-group (Hymenoptera, Tenthredinidae) in Northern Europe. Entomologica Fennica, 10(2), pp.95-101.

Liston A, Knight G, Sheppard D, Broad G, Livermore L (2014) Checklist of British and Irish Hymenoptera - Sawflies, ‘Symphyta’. Biodiversity Data Journal 2: e1168. https://doi.org/10.3897/BDJ.2.e1168

Liston, A., Prous, M. and Macek, J., 2019. On Bulgarian sawflies, including a new species of Empria (Hymenoptera, Symphyta). Deutsche Entomologische Zeitschrift, 66, p.85.

Macek, J.; Kula, E. 2015: Revisionary study on European species of the Empria candidata complex (Hymenoptera, Symphyta, Tenthredinidae). - Zootaxa, Auckland 3946(2): 251-260.

Prous, M.; Heidemaa, M.; Soon, V. 2011: Empria longicornis species group: taxonomic revision with notes on phylogeny and ecology (Hymenoptera, Tenthredinidae). - Zootaxa, Auckland 2756: 1-39.

Prous, M., Lee, K.M. and Mutanen, M., 2020. Cross-contamination and strong mitonuclear discordance in Empria sawflies (Hymenoptera, Tenthredinidae) in the light of phylogenomic data. Molecular phylogenetics and evolution, 143, p.106670.

Schmidt, S., Taeger, A., Morinière, J., Liston, A., Blank, S.M., Kramp, K., Kraus, M., Schmidt, O., Heibo, E., Prous, M. and Nyman, T., 2017. Identification of sawflies and horntails (Hymenoptera,‘Symphyta’) through DNA barcodes: successes and caveats. Molecular Ecology Resources, 17(4), pp.670-685.