Little did I know that when I went for walk at the Lodge yesterday lunchtime that I was about to increase that number by one.
Walking through the Old Heath I noticed a largish black beetle flying in front of me. I caught it in my hand and potted it. I assumed that it was going to be a Phytoecia cylindrica but on closer inspection it obviously wasn't but I had no clue as to its identity.
I took the beetle home to check against the literature. A bit of sleuthing later and I had got it to Tetropium gabrieli. There's not much available on this species but I think it's introduced and now established in a few places. The beetle feeds almost exclusively on larch and there's plenty of that at the Lodge.
Surprisingly this species has never been recorded from an RSPB reserve before. The Lodge is really well covered so presumably this species is a very recent arrival.
So today I went out and went to the same area and had a look at some of the larch trees, Within 5 minutes I'd located 2-3 adult beetles crawling around the bark cracks on one particular larch and manage to grab some rubbish video.
I will have to keep an eye out for these and see if I can find them on any more trees. Beetles of Britain and Ireland vol 4 says that the adults emerge in the summer and are mainly crepuscular and nocturnal. These obviously hadn't read the script.
In honour of its name, here's an appropriate (and rather lovely) track.