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Forwarding a message from Andrew Whitehouse of Buglife in connection with their oil beetle survey:
John Walters has produced a splendid new version of our oil beetle ID guide, this updates the guidance on separating Black Oil Beetle (Meloe proscarabaeus) and Violet Oil Beetle (M. violaceus), and has new information on the identification of the recently rediscovered Mediterranean Oil Beetle (M. mediterraneus):
Our first records of Black Oil Beetle for this year came in on the 15th Feb, this beastie has been seen at a few sites in South and East Devon so far, although the cold snap has probably put things on hold for now.
Please send your records in to our survey:
[Details of oil beetles posted on iSpot are also being passed on to Buglife.]
Thanks and best wishes