Pseudovadonia livida (Fabricius, 1777)
A southern English species with only a few, older, records north of the Wash (Lincolnshire). Absent from Wales and most of the west country although there are modern coastal records from Cornwall. South Dorset and Hampshire including the Isle of Wight, Kent, coastal Essex and the Thames valley and East Anglia include most of the modern records (Twinn and Harding). Quoted simple as local by both Hickin and Joy this species is common throughout our Watford area often, though not exclusively, in association with woodland or wooded parkland though it must be said that in some years they are much more abundant than others; during August 2007 adults were abundant in Cassiobury park and generally common throughout Whippendell wood whereas during 2008, despite similar more or less weekly recording sessions we did not find a single specimen. Locally adults begin to appear in May, generally later rather than earlier, and persist into the second or third week of August. The vast majority of our sightings have been from Hogweed(Heracleum) flowers among long grass or dense herbage out in the open, ie away from trees, during hot sunshine although we have sometimes swept them from shaded Cow Parsley (Anthriscus) when they were not seen at the flowers. During 2008 a large number were found on Lilies in a Watford garden. Occasionally the adults swarm; on the second of july 1980 a group of about 60 adults, many in cop., was observed feeding on Buttercup (Ranunculus) pollen in flowers bordering farmland on Botwell common in West London, far from any woodland. Little is known of the early stages and we find various opinions regarding the host; in Twinn and Harding 'larvae are said to inhabit both deciduous and coniferous trees', Demelt (1966) gives Quercus as the central european host while Horion (1974) quotes Castanea in Denmark. Hansen (1966) quotes conifers. Svacha and Danilevsky (1986) describe the larvae as living free in the soil and feeding on the mycelium of Marasmius oreodes.

6-9mm. Small and robust, much more robust than the superficially similar Alosterna, this will become obvious in the field. Head broad and strongly produced forward in front of eyes, obliquely oriented to longitudinal axis of body. Shiny black with wide, shallow puncturation and dense, erect pubescence. With a narrow longitudinal furrow between eyes. Mouthparts black, last segment of palps weakly dilated. Eyes large weakly incised above around antennal insertions. Temples inconspicuous, rounded or weakly angled and strongly constricted. Antennae black relatively short and robust, apical segments widened, longer in male; in female barely reaching middle of elytra. First segment expanded, second small and third slightly longer than fourth. Pronotum shiny black, quadrate and without lateral borders or sculpture, surface with shallow puncturation, a little sparser than on head, and dense outstanding pubescence. Front margin distinctly bordered, hind margin sinuate with rounded hind angles. Scutellum shining black, impunctateand emarginate at apex. Elytra testaceum with suture darker, shoulders much wider than pronotal base, narrowing to rounded apices. Puncturation finer than on pronotum, random but with a tendency to form rows, with dense, semi-erect golden pubescence. Pro- and (sometimes) Meso-tibiae, tibial spines and last segment of tarsi (obscurely) testaceous or pitchy red, legs otherwise black.

Description taken from 2 Watford specimens examined at X20

References
Demelt, C. 1966. Bockkafer oder Cerambycidae. I Biology mitteleuropaischer bokkafer unter besonderer Berucksichtigung der larven. Die Tierwelt Deutchlands 55:1-115
Hansen, V. 1966. Traebukke- Danmarks Fauna, 73:1-208.
Horion, A. 1974. Faunistic der mitteleuropaischen Kafer. Bd. XII Cerambycidae- Bokkafer-Uberlingen-Bodensee, 1-228
Svacha, P. and Danilevsky, M.L. 1986. Cerambycid larvae of Europe and Soviet Union. Part 1-Acta Universitalis Carolinae-Biologica.Praque

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