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#1 2009-01-07 04:29:30

Jason G
Registered user
Name: Jason Green
From: London
Registered: 2009-01-07
Posts: 55
Website

Rare tachinid 'Mintho rufiventris' seen, June 2007...

Hi all,

Just to share my news of having found a rarity...

Last year in June I photographed a fly I didn't recognise. Then by chance late on Sunday I came across a website with a named picture of a fly. I recognised it to be the one I'd seen earlier in the year and Googled it to read more, only to then find out it is a 'rarity'! Apparently - though it may well be recovering and under-recorded - I read it has, in the past been known only from 12 locations or so. I'm pretty pleased!

I then found that it's host lepidopterate was in the area too - as is the straw the caterpillar host probably feeds on from a horse stable that is within half a mile of where I saw the fly!!

Needless to say I will be paying special attention to this fly now, it's my pet project for 2009. I'm hoping to see/distantly photograph two mating. Well, I can dream can't I?!

I've informed the Tachinid Recording Scheme, too.

Has anyone here seen one, or have any tips for me on how better to monitor it for breeding, etc.?

Take care,

Jason


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Last edited by Jason G (2009-01-07 04:31:51)

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#2 2009-01-07 11:26:18

conopid
DF Members
Name: Nigel Jones
From: Shrewsbury
Registered: 2008-02-27
Posts: 703
Website

Re: Rare tachinid 'Mintho rufiventris' seen, June 2007...

Jason,
Yes that is a nice find. You may well find the fly in the same place in future years. I have recorded this fly in separate years (on one occasion in each year) in my garden in Shrewsbury. All three sightings were from a very small area of the garden. On two occasions a M rufiventris was found sitting in almost exactly the same position on a fence post as in the previous year, and subsequently another specimen was seen just a few feet away from that position. A quite incredible coincidence!

I think this is probably quite a widespread species, but that it only ever occurs in very low numbers, so that it is not often seen.


Nigel Jones
Shropshire

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#3 2009-01-07 11:59:05

Howard Bentley
Committee
Name: Howard Bentley
Registered: 2008-07-07
Posts: 794

Re: Rare tachinid 'Mintho rufiventris' seen, June 2007...

Mintho rufiventris occasionally turns up inside my house (in Kent). Usually I only see one a year, but 2008 was exceptional - there were 4, all on the same window! - 2 on 22 June, 1 on 5 July and 1 on 2 Aug. All were females.

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#4 2009-01-07 18:10:05

Jason G
Registered user
Name: Jason Green
From: London
Registered: 2009-01-07
Posts: 55
Website

Re: Rare tachinid 'Mintho rufiventris' seen, June 2007...

Interesting. I presume you informed your local Biological Records Centre? NBN for example shows it is found quite tightly around the Thames, however both of you say you've had them in Kent and Shrewsbury. I know of one sighting in Lincolnshire too, so we should ensure they get as many records as possible.

Other problems some may have is missidentifications - Cylindromyia interrupta. I had to check carefully to rule it out. However, I think Cylindromyia's have all-black legs, whereas the top of M. rufiventris's is dark red - just about discernible in my photos.

All feel free to update this thread when you see them this year!

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#5 2009-01-08 11:59:00

Howard Bentley
Committee
Name: Howard Bentley
Registered: 2008-07-07
Posts: 794

Re: Rare tachinid 'Mintho rufiventris' seen, June 2007...

I think there are enough differences betwen Mintho and Cylindromyia to make it unlikely that they would be confused - thoracic stripes, the shape of the red coloration on the abdomen, and the very marked lateral flattening of the abdomen in Mintho for example.

I wouldn't rely too much on the NBN gateway for an accurate picture of distribution, especially of Calypterates - see recent correspondence on this site.

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