Psen rossicus GOSSAKOVSKIJ 1937
Description and notes
A small, ground-nesting red and black solitary wasp. Identification keys are given in Richards (1980), Lomholt (1984) and Yeo & Corbet (1995).
Widely recorded from scattered localities in southern Britain north to south Lancashire.
Overseas, recorded throughout Europe eastwards to the Ukraine (Wolf 1972).
Status (in Britain only)
Not listed in Shirt (1978), but given as Notable A by Falk (1991) and thought to be restricted to very few sites. The number of modern records suggest the status of this species may need review.
Found in a range of open habitats with light soils such as heathland, open woodland, dry grassland and coastal dunes.
Univoltine; June to September, though with the peak flight period in July and August (Falk 1991).
Nest burrows are stocked with a range of small homopteran bugs, usually leafhoppers of the family Cicadellidae (see Guichard 1972). Some prey species are associated with woodland and tree or scrub foliage, so the presence of broadleaved woodland or established scrub may be important for this species. There is a strong association with leafhoppers found on aspen (D. Baldock, pers. comm.).
Nests are dug in light soil in warm situations. Nests have been found at the base of grass clumps or sometimes beneath leaf litter, so some shelter may be advantageous. Nests consist of a single burrow, 10-12cm in length, often occurring in small aggregations (Guichard 1972).
Only wild parsnip has been recorded.
None recorded from Britain.
Year profile last updated