Female: The head is smooth and polished, yellow with extensive black markings. The thorax is mostly black with a rectangular yellow fleck on the mesoscutellum. Venation is yellowish basally and brown thereafter. Stigma is brownish yellow.The abdomen is orange-brown above marked with varying amounts of black and with black on tergite 1 and part of tergite 2.
Male: Head mostly black posteriorly and yellow anteriorly. Mesoscutellum and metascutellum normally yellow. Venation as per the female. Abdomen above frequently yellowish brown but, in the darkest speciments, only tergites 4 and 5 are orange brown, the rest being black.
Pamphilius varius larvae feed in leaf rolls on birches in sunny locations. Downy birch is preferred.
Size: 7 - 11mm
Status: Fairly common.
Distribution: England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland
Flight period: May to June
Plant associations: Betula spp. esp. pubescens (birch, esp. downy birch)
The National Biodiversity Network records are shown on the map below. (See terms and conditions)
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
Viitasaari, M. ed., 2002. Sawflies (Hymenoptera, Symphyta), I: a review of the suborder, the Western Palaearctic taxa of Xyeloidea and Pamphilioidea. Tremex Press.