Pamphilius stramineipes - Highland Rose Spinner

A little known northern species. There was an extensive run of records between 1946 and 1952 from Speyside and Perthshire, then nothing until two further Perthshire records in 2010 and 2019 (Musgrove, 2022).

Female: The head is mostly black with yellow on the inner eye orbits, lower part of clypeus and a yellow stripe from the eye to the back of the head. The thorax is primarily black but with a yellow mesoscutellum and metascutellum. Abdomen mostly black above with lateral margins narrowly yellow. Apical tergites may be margined with pale yellow right across. Tergites 4 and 5 (sometimes others also) marked reddish-brown. Venation is basally yellow with yellow costa and subcosta and otherwise brown.

Male: The head anteriorly yellow along with genae and a yellow stripe from the eye to the back of the head. Mesoscutellum and metascutellum yellow. Abdomen mostly black above with tergites 4 and 5 (sometimes entirely) yellowish-brown. Venation as for female.

Pamphilius stramineipes larvae feed on rose leaves. Early instars feed in a roll of the leaf margin. Late instars draw several leaflets together or fold a leaflet.

Jump to other Pamphiliidae

Size: Male: 8 - 10mm, Female: 8 - 12mm

GB IUCN Status: Near Threatened
GB Rarity Status: Nationally Rare

Distribution: Scotland

Flight period: June

Plant associations: Rosa spp. (wild roses). Also recorded from Rosa rugosa (Japanese Rose) in Japan.


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 Natural England, unpublished

Viitasaari, M. ed., 2002. Sawflies (Hymenoptera, Symphyta), I: a review of the suborder, the Western Palaearctic taxa of Xyeloidea and Pamphilioidea. Tremex Press.