Cantharis decipiens Baudi, 1871
Occurs throughout England, Wales and southern Scotland (Alexander). Found in a range of habitats supporting at least some trees or shrubs, it is common across the Watford area, the first adults are usually swept from grass or low vegetation bordering wooded areas but they become common in late April or early May on Hawthorn blossom in just about any situations e.g. bordering the river Colne along Radlett road, in Whippendell wood or in the open among long grass on Common moor. Following the Hawthorn flowers they are common on umbel flowers in bright sunshine. As well as flowers they may be beaten from broadleaved trees in most situations and towards the end of their season, in July or early August, from untended grassland and occasionally town centre gardens. In the north and east of its distribution the species is more restricted to broadleaved woodland (Alexander).

Unlike many chrysomelids and carabids which produced very reduced populations during 2007 compared with 2006, decipiens was common in both years

7.5-8.5mm. The small size and distinctly marked pronotum coupled with testaceous elytra make this species easy to identify even in the field. Antennae testaceous, darker towards apex. Palpi testaceous, terminal segment triangular. Head black to front margin of eyes, testaceous anteriorly, finely punctate and pubescent. Eyes prominent and temples gently constricted to pronotum. Pronotal disc characteristically darkened from front to hind margins, front margin evenly rounded, sides sinuate in front of distinct hind angles, explanate laterally, very finely punctate and pubescent over entire surface (X30) and without basal fovea. Scutellum black. Elytra entire, covering wings and unusually abdomen, with sparse short recumbent and longer semi-erect pubescence, shiny and strongly rugose. Legs testaceous, hind femur and tibia variously darkened but femur always pale at apex. Third tarsal segment bilobed, anterior of each pair of claws appendiculate.

Description from 4 Watford specimens at X20.


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