Ground Beetles of Ireland

Lebia cruxminor

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Lebia cruxminor
© Roy Anderson
Lebia cruxminor
W. W. Fowler
Lebia cruxminor
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(Maps updated 30th November 2009)

Lebia cruxminor (Linnaeus, 1758)

Description: A colourful 6-7mm long yellow ground beetle with prominent black cross marking on the wing cases.

World Distribution: A Eurasian Wide-temperate species (65), widespread in Europe south to north Africa and Asia Minor, and eastwards to Siberia and Japan.

Irish Status: Early records are for Muckross, Killarney (Bullock, 1914) and the Clare shore of Lough Derg (MacKechnie Jarvis, 1971). Very local and difficult to find. Modern records: Derrybeg West and Derrymacrow, Crom, Fermanagh (Keith Alexander & Andrew Foster, 1992); Doonweelin L., Sligo and Garron, Roscommon (Martin Cawley, 2003, 2009); Glengarriff Forest, Cork (Myles Nolan, 2004); Teiges Mountain, Tyrone (Dave Allen, Clive Mellon, 2009). In Britain, it is restricted to a few sites in the extreme south of England.

Ecology: Parasitic on the leaf beetle Galeruca tanaceti (L.), usually in areas where the food plant Succisa pratensis is dominant. Can be taken by sweeping Succisa heathlands at dusk, but is more regularly encountered by field workers counting marsh fritillary webs.