Ectemnius continuus Fabricius, 1804 ♀
Tubize, BRABANT ● Belgium
Description: The female is 9.5–14.5 mm in length, the male 8-12 mm.
It has reduced yellow spots on gastral terga 1 and 3.
Biology: The species can be seen from early May to late September.
Adults show a strong attraction to the flowers of umbellifers such as angelica, hogweed, wild carrot, wild parsnip, fennel, hedge-parsley and water-dropwort, which appear to act both as a source of prey and nectar. Other flower visiting records include thistles, ragworts, yarrow and spurges.
Prey consists of flies, especially medium-sized flies.
Nests are found in burrows within dead wood such as old tree stumps, fallen trunks and limbs, fence posts, even building timbers.
The cleptoparasites of this species are likely to include anthomyiid flies of the genus Eustalomyia, which are often found close to the nests, and possibly sarcophagid flies of the genera Amobia and Macronychia.
Habitat: It can be encountered in a wide variety of habitats ranging from rides and clearings in woodlands through to intensive farmland, urban locations, wetlands and coastal habitats. Perhaps most frequent where abundant supplies of dead wood and umbellifer flowers are available.
Distribution: It is one of the most common Ectemnius species in Europe.
BWARS, Bees, Wasps & Ants Recording Society