Added by Liston and Blank in 2006. The three species of Xyela can be difficult to identify from single specimens due to the few available characteristics.
In this species, males and females are piceous and more or less marked with yellow. The wings are brownish infuscate. The sawsheath is sharply pointed.
Xyela longula larvae feed on the developing pollen in immature male cones causing the cones to become bent out of shape. Several larvae may feed in each cone. Larvae emerge and drop to the ground to pupate. They hatch the next spring or may enter diapause for two to three years. The pupa has free legs and can run around on the surface before the adult emerges from the exuvia.
Size: approx. 3.5 - 4.5mm
Flight period: Mid-March to late-April
Plant associations: Pinus sylvestris (Scots pine) (1)
1. Blank, S.M., 2002. The Western Palaearctic Xyelidae (Hymenoptera), pp. 197-233. In: Viitasaari, M. (editor), Sawflies (Hymenoptera, Symphyta) I. A review of the suborder, the Western Palaearctic taxa of Xyeloidea and Pamphiloidea, Tremex, Helsinki
2. 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