Red-headed Ladybird    Rhyzobius lophanthae

Other name:  Red-headed Rhyzobius

This species has spread rapidly in southern England and is associated with Leyland Cypress.

Identification         Length  2.0mm

Straightforward if seen well.

Black elytra (wing cases) have distinctive extra long bristles.

The head and pronotum are an orangey red, as is the entire underside.

On some individuals, and in some lighting conditions, the orange red colour is less obvious and at first glance they can resemble one of the all black Scymnus species.

Upshire, Essex
Broxbourne, Herts
Waltham Abbey, Essex
Waltham Abbey, Essex
Waltham Abbey, Essex
Waltham Abbey, Essex
Waltham Abbey, Essex
All orange underside
With Forestier's Ladybird

Habitat

Has a strong affinity with Leyland Cypress. I have often found them in garden wheelie bins which have been filled with prunings from Leyland Cypress hedges.

Leyland Cypress hedge.  Waltham Abbey, Essex
Leyland Cypress prunings containing six Red-headed Ladybirds

They sometimes also occur with Round-keeled, Red-flanked and Forestier's Ladybirds in garden wheelie bins containing mixed prunings of evergreen shrubs, although they are rarely common.

Copyright Andrew Jewels 2019-2020