Red-flanked Ladybird   Scymnus interruptus

Other name: Red-flanked Scymnus

This is a common garden specialist that is difficult to find in open countryside. 

I regularly find it in garden wheelie bins containing prunings from evergreen shrubs, but they can also be found by beating ornamental garden shrubs.

Identification        Length  1.5-2.2mm

Typical form       (About 90% of my records)

Very distinctive. Black with a red triangle on each wingcase. Diagnostically these reach the side of the wingcase and even extend to the underside edge (the epipleuron).

Some show red around the face area and these may be males, with females having a mostly dark face.

Broxbourne, Herts
Chingford, Essex
Chingford, Essex
Thundridge, Herts
Exeter, Devon
Exeter, Devon
Waltham Abbey, Essex
Underside showing red epipleuron
Showing small size
With 2-spot Ladybird
With 22-spot Ladybird
With Forestier's Ladybird

Light form      (About 10% of my records)

These have the orangey red colour extending over most of the wingcase, except for a dark central line and are confusable with Conifer Ladybird. Red-flanked Ladybird is a wider robust species, compared to the narrower Conifer Ladybird. The red epipleuron is still the diagnostic feature to look for.

Thundridge, Herts
Upshire, Essex
Nazeing, Essex
Waltham Abbey, Essex
Nazeing, Essex
Upshire, Essex
Diagnostic red epipleuron
With Harlequin Ladybird
With Round-keeled Ladybird

Habitat

Can be common in garden evergreen shrubs, especially Euonymus, Privet, Viburnum tinus, Firethorn and Ivy.

One of the restrictions on recording this species is gaining access to private gardens. Many of my records are due to the fact that I work as a gardener.

It is likely to occur in ornamental planting in parks, car parks and other public spaces.

I have found it by eye on an ivy covered fence outside Loughton Underground Station, Essex.

Viburnum tinus.  Waltham Abbey, Essex
Ivy covered fence.  Waltham Abbey, Essex
Euonymus.  Upshire, Essex
Can also be found in deciduous trees and shrubs, including Oak and Wiegela.
Oak tree.  Royal Tunbridge Wells, Kent

Additional Photographs

With Red Spider Mite
With Flea Beetle
Nazeing, Essex
Minorca, Spain
Minorca, Spain
Waltham Abbey, Essex

Copyright Andrew Jewels 2019-2020