Longicorn from Norway: Leptura quadrifasciata

Subject: What’s that bug?
Location: Stavanger in Norway
August 19, 2016 3:37 am
Found it today in Norway, doesn’t seem to fly. It’s afraid to move.
Signature: Raphaël

Longicorn:  Leptura quadrifasciata
Longicorn: Leptura quadrifasciata

Dear Raphaël,
This is a Longicorn in the family Cerambycidae, and we believe we have correctly identified it as
Leptura quadrifasciata, beginning with a FlickR image that indicates:  “Origin: Europe
Ecology: Development in Hardwood Location: Germany, Bavaria, Upper Franconia, Kulmbach.”  We verified that identification on Biodiversity Reference where we learned:  “It has the long antennae characteristic of the family and, like most longhorns, is associated with old woodland, where its larvae are wood-borers in old trunks and stumps and logs.
L. quadrifasciata is said to be associated particularly with oak (Quercus) and alder (Alnus) (Lonsdale, 1991), though willows (Salix) are evidently also much used in central Europe. Nutrition of longhorn beetles appears to be from the wood itself, unlike a number of wood-boring beetles that feed primarily on the associated fungi. Adult L. quadrifasciata feeds on pollen and it is one of the species that can be seen on flowers such as various umbellifers.  Identification Longhorn beetles are variable in their patterning and identification can be difficult. L. quadrifasciata is, however, a distinctive species, with the four yellow bands running across its elytra, though the size of these bands can vary.”  It is called the Four-Banded Longhorn Beetle on Nature Spot, and while there is no image on the site, it states:  “Widespread but rather local distribution it is generally fairly frequent in Britain.”  There are plenty of images on BioPix, but not much information.  Both sexes are depicted on Cerambycidae, and this information is provided:  “Host plant:    polyphagous in deciduous trees (Alnus, Fagus, Salix, Populus, Quercus, Betula, Corylus etc.)  Distribution:    Europe, Turkey, Caucasus, Transcaucasia, North Iran.”  Finally, we found an image of Leptura quadrifasciata in our own archives, and we received a comment from Mardikavana that states:  “By the looks of it it is a male because the tip of female antennae is yellow (last three segments). Males have black antennae.”  It is difficult to discern the color in the tips of the antennae in the sharper of your images, and in the image that has more shallow depth of field, with the antennae out of focus, it appears the tips may be yellow, indicating you may have found a female Four Banded Longhorn Beetle, but since the color balance of your two images is different, we suspect the difference in the antennae we perceived might be due to light source, flash photography versus incandescent light.

Longicorn:  Leptura quadrifasciata
Longicorn: Leptura quadrifasciata

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