SN1137 : Ragwort with guests

taken 10 years ago, near to Crosswell, Pembrokeshire/Sir Benfro, Great Britain

Ragwort  with guests
Ragwort with guests
The turf on Castell Llwyd is speckled with numerous flowers, many of which (trefoil, yarrow, hawksbit) indicate that this is undisturbed grassland. This does not include ragwort and there is a campaign to rid the countryside of this plant, which is poisonous to (but avoided by) grazing animals although it is valuable as a host to dozens of insect species.
This ragwort plant supports the striped caterpillars of the Cinnabar Moth as well as several mating pairs of the Soldier Beetle. This soldier beetle is called the ‘bloodsucker’ in some areas because of its bright red colouration. It is the most common soldier beetle in Britain, and is typically seen on large flower heads, often in mating pairs. Soldier beetles are elongated beetles that have soft bodies. The red wing cases (elytra) are covered with short downy hair and are black at the tips.
(ID thanks to Rob Farrow and information from ARKive.)
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SN1137, 9 images   (more nearby )
Photographer
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Date Taken
Wednesday, 18 July, 2007   (more nearby)
Submitted
Sunday, 22 July, 2007
Category
Plantlife   (more nearby)
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SN 114 374 [100m precision]
WGS84: 52:0.2073N 4:44.9426W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SN 114 374
View Direction
EAST (about 90 degrees)
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