Monday, 13 July 2009
So called because of their bright colours, which are reminiscent of military uniforms, soldier beetles are predatory, often hunting on the flowers found in grassland, hedgerows and woodland margins. Their wings are covered by a soft elytra, with a straight join down the middle of their back and they fly well in sunshine. These Rhagonycha fulva were seen at Allen Banks and appear to be mating. They are a very common species and, although they are harmless, are often called the bloodsucker because of their colour. Their bodies are little more than ten millimetres long. I am grateful to Joe Botting of British Bugs for his help with identification (even though they are beetles and not bugs).
Posted by Emma Anderson