Orussus abietinus - Jewel Beetle Wood Wasp

Reported to have been present in Britain in the past from only two old records, from Kent (1817) and Devon (probably 1824 or 1826). A third record from Sussex (ca 1880) was shown to be erroneous (Musgrove, 2022). The species is distinctive in having antennal sockets well below the level of the eyes.

Orussus abietinus larvae are unique in being internal parasites of wood boring jewel beetle larvae. The commonest jewel beetle in Britain is itself Nationally Scarce.

Size: 9 - 15mm

GB IUCN Status: Regionally Extinct
GB Rarity Status: Extinct

Distribution: England

Flight period: July

Plant associations: Not Applicable


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. https://doi.org/10.3897/BDJ.2.e1168

Musgrove, A.J. 2022. A review of the status of sawflies of Great Britain - Phase 1: families other than Tenthredinidae. Natural England, unpublished