Another beautiful but very rare beetle is the noble chafer gnorimus nobilis.
These sun-loving insects have been recorded in the New Forest from late June to July on elderberry and hogweed flowers, mainly in the vicinity of Brockenhurst and Lyndhurst, even at the side of the busy A35.
The grubs (larvae) develop for two to three years in decaying old but still live trees, possibly oak and beech in the Forest, but often in old orchards (apple, cherry, plum) in its limited range elsewhere in England. They typically feed in rotting wood debris in cavities and hollows.
Please look out for these beetles on flowers in gardens, campsites, parks and the like and contact the People’s Trust for Endangered Species if you find one; don’t forget to photograph it first.
Conservation status: RDB2 – Red list, vulnerable.
Photos: Paul D. Brock