A new fly found at Burchett’s Meadow

I went to have  a look at Burchett’s Meadow earlier in the week as I haven’t been there for 8 years! It is a small meadow owned by the National Trust in between our two woodlands – Birchett’s and Hembury Woods. It is a small meadow with a small stream running beside it and it is rich in wildlife – a good place to see silver washed fritillaries. Our Ranger John Wales has done a good job managing the bracken.

I found this small wasp-like fly with very long antennae – initially I thought it was a hoverfly in the genus Chrysotoxum but it didn’t quite fit. After a bit of googling and leafing through field guides I realised it was a fly called Conops flavipes which is closed related to the hoverflies.

Conops flavipes
Three black and yellow bands on the abdomen and a yellow spot on the thorax – along with the very long and distinctive antennae

Burchetts Meadow
Burchett’s Meadow – you can see the bands of cut and raked bracken

Conops flavipesAn uncommon fly in the UK and this record appears to be a new 10km square record

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