The Nature Conservation Group for the Prestwood Area

About Prestwood Nature

We are the Nature Conservation Group for the area around Prestwood, including Great Missenden,
The Hampdens, The Kingshills, North Dean and Speen

Our Aims

Prestwood Nature aims to protect and enhance the quality of the natural environment through the involvement of local people.

Coming events

Protecting Our Own Environment Registered charity No. 1114685

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Diptera (Two-winged Flies)

Ctenophora flaveolata - Red Data Book craneflyThree Red Data Book flies have been recorded in our area.  These are the striking yellow-and-black cranefly Ctenophora flaveolata (Hampden area), the hoverfly Microdon devius (Perks Lane NR; a Chilterns speciality), and the picture-wing fly whose larvae feed on Musk Thistle Urophora solstitialis (Longdown Bank).  To these should be added the False Slender-footed Robberfly Leptarthrus vitripennis, for which Perks Lane NR is one of the handful of known sites in Britain. 

Another seven Nationally Notable species have been recorded, including another Ctenophora species (pectinicornis) from Longfield Wood, a duller cranefly Tipula peliostigma (Great Hampden & Denner Hill), a dung-fly Parallelomma vittatum (Langley Wood), and four hoverflies.  Cheilosia soror (Brickfields) is a black species, another Chiltern speciality, but the others are more strikingly coloured: the yellow-and-black Didea fasciata, the large yellow-abdomened Volucella inanis, and the black-and-red Volucella inflata

There are other striking hoverflies of note as well, such as the largest British species Volucella zonaria that has recently expanded its once restricted range into our area, the blood-red and black Brachypalpoides lentus seen in Angling Spring Wood, and two distinctive grassland species Xanthogramma pedisequum and Chrysotoxum bicinctum. In 2009 Chalcosyrphus nemorum was discovered at the Sheepwash - its larvae only live in water-logged wood.

It is likely that the area would repay more intensive searches for Diptera.  So far 395 species have been recorded for recent times, including 82 hoverflies.