Macrophya montana - Dimorphic Strider

Widespread and often common in England from the Midlands southwards. Much more sparsely distributed further north, although Benson (1952) noted that it had been recorded even to Orkney. Still quite local in Wales (Musgrove, 2023).

This species has black stigma and the base of the femur in both sexes is yellow and black at the apex. The abdomen of the female differs from that of the male. In the female, the fifth and sixth tergites have broad lateral yellow flashes and the ninth is yellow on the dorsal face. These markings are occasionally white. In the male, the abdomen is black, but the legs are distinctively coloured with the front four entirely pale yellow and the hind legs entirely black with white feet. Adults often visit umbellifers, especially hogweed, sometimes in large numbers, and in shrub or wooded areas.

Macrophya montana larvae feed on blackberry and possibly dewberry.

Jump to other Macrophya species

Size: 9 - 11mm

GB IUCN Status: Least Concern
GB Rarity Status: None

Distribution: England, Scotland, Wales

Flight period: May to June in the south, August to September in northern Scotland

Plant associations:  Rubus fruticosus, poss. Rubus caesius, etc. (blackberry, poss. dewberry, etc.)


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 Natural England, unpublished