Red Soldier Beetle

Rhagonycha fulva

  1. Wildlife
  2. Invertebrates
  3. Beetles
  4. Red Soldier Beetle

About

The Common Red Soldier Beetle is a medium-sized, narrow beetle commonly found on open-structured flowers, such as daises, Cow Parsley and Hogweed, during the summer. It can be spotted in grassland, woodland, along hedgerows and in parks and gardens. Adults feed on aphids, and also eat pollen and nectar. Larvae prey on ground-dwelling invertebrates, such as slugs and snails, and live at the base of long grasses. The adults spend much of their short, summer lives mating and can often be seen in pairs.

How to identify

The Common Red Soldier Beetle is also known as the 'Bloodsucker' for its striking red appearance, but it is harmless to humans. It has a narrow, rectangular body with longish antennae. There are about 40 species of soldier beetle in the UK, displaying various colour combinations of black, red and orange.

Where to find it

Widespread.

Habitats

When to find it

  • June
  • July
  • August

How can people help

The Wildlife Trusts recognise the importance of healthy habitats to support all kinds of species, so manage many nature reserves for the benefit of all kinds of wildlife. But these precious sites are under threat from development, intensive agricultural practices and climate change. You can help by supporting your local Trust and becoming a member; you'll find out about exciting wildlife happenings, events on your doorstep and volunteering opportunities, and be helping local wildlife along the way.

Species information

Common name
Red Soldier Beetle
Latin name
Rhagonycha fulva
Category
Invertebrates
Beetles
Statistics
Length: 1cm
Conservation status
Common.