There are thought to be 293 species of Macrophya species distributed across the holarctic and oriental regions. There are ten species in Britain and two in Ireland (Macrophya duodecimpunctata, Macrophya punctumalbum) within two subgenera.
Together with Pachyprotasis, the Macrophya have an elongated hind coxae and an elongated hind femur, which is itself about as long as the hind tibia. This gives the hind legs an overall appearance similar to that of the spider-hunting wasps, or the crickets and grasshoppers. The apical hind tibial spurs are much longer than the apical breadth of the tibia. The antennae are shorter than those of the Pachyprotasis at scarcely twice the width of the head and with the third segment at least one and a half times longer than the fourth. Three of the species (blanda, duodecempunctata and annulata) have a metepimeral appendage: a small round, oval or triangular sclerite located just beneath the hind wing at the juncture of the thorax and abdomen.
Of the 30 or so species present in Europe, 10 are found in Britain and two (duodecempunctata and punctumalbum) are found in Ireland. Larvae vary from the monophagous species that feed solely on elder, to oligophagous species which feed only on members of a certain plant family.
Groupings of the species have been proposed as follows: Macrophya epinota group (albicincta, alboannulata, ribis), Macrophya blanda-duodecempunctata group (annulata, blanda, duodecempunctata), and Macrophya postica group (montana). The remaining species are ungrouped.
Macrophya (Macrophya) albicincta (Schrank, 1776)
Macrophya (Macrophya) albipuncta (Fallén, 1808)
Macrophya (Macrophya) alboannulata Costa, 1859
Macrophya (Macrophya) annulata (Geoffroy, 1785)
Macrophya (Macrophya) blanda (Fabricius, 1775)
Macrophya (Macrophya) duodecimpunctata (Linnaeus, 1758)
Macrophya (Macrophya) montana (Scopoli, 1763)
Macrophya (Macrophya) ribis (Schrank, 1781)
Macrophya (Macrophya) rufipes (Linnaeus, 1758)
Macrophya (Pseudomacrophya) punctumalbum (Linnaeus, 1767)
Benson, R.B., 1952. Handbooks for the Identification of British Insects. Hymenoptera, Symphyta, Vol 6, Section 2(a-c), Royal Entomological Society, London
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Gibson, G. A. P. 1980: A revision of the genus Macrophya Dahlbom (Hymenoptera: Symphyta, Tenthredinidae) of North America. - Memoirs of the Entomological Society of Canada, Ottawa 114: 1-167.
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
Taeger, A., Liston, A.D., Prous, M., Groll, E.K., Gehroldt, T. & Blank S.M. 2018: ECatSym – Electronic World Catalog of Symphyta (Insecta, Hymenoptera). Program version 5.0 (19 Dec 2018), data version 40 (23 Sep 2018). – Senckenberg Deutsches Entomologisches Institut (SDEI), Müncheberg. https://sdei.de/ecatsym/ Access: 18 Dec 2020