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The Charmouth area is the last recorded site for two species that have not been seen anywhere in the British Isles since the 1920s. The flea beetle Longitarsus aeruginosus [RDB1] (Chrysomelidae) was formerly known from Dorset to Surrey, but was last found at Charmouth in 1925 and may now be extinct with us. The species should be looked for on Hemp Agrimony Eupatorium cannabinum in July. The weevil Tychius crassirostris [RDBK] (Curculionidae) is only known from a few specimens found at Charmouth in 1926 and 1927. In Europe it is associated with melilots Melilotus and medicks Medicago, and should be sought in May and June.
Areas of landslip west of Eype's Mouth hold several nationally rare beetles.Two species are apparently found nowhere else in the British Isles, although at least the first of these is likely to be more widespread: the tiny Microsporus acaroides (Microsporidae) - the only British representative of the suborder Myxophaga - can be found in mud and at plant roots at the edge of standing freshwater pools during June and July, where it looks like a hemispherical version of an oribatid mite. The weevil Sitona gemellatus [RDB1] (Curculionidae) is found at the roots of Leguminosae in the summer. The last species used to occur in similar areas at Sidmouth (Devon) but has not been recorded from there recently. Other rare beetles at this site include the tiger beetle Cicindela germanica [RDB3] (Carabidae), which is rather easily found running in the open from June to August, the ground beetle Drypta dentata [RDB1] (Carabidae) found under stones from April to July, and the weevil Baris analis [RDB2] (Curculionidae) on Common Fleabane Pulicaria dysenterica from March to June.
On vegetated parts of Chesil Beach at Ferry Bridge south of Weymouth, Omophlus rufitarsis [RDB1] (Tenebrionidae) may be found sparingly in June and July, usually on flowers or at the roots of Thrift Armeria maritima. In decaying vegetation on shingle at the same locality, look for Anthicus tristis [RDB1] (Anthicidae) in April. Both species are found nowhere else in the British Isles.
Along the south coast from Weymouth east to St Aldhelm's Head, Scybalicus oblongiusculus [-] (Carabidae) used to occur under stones in the spring but it is probably now extinct in the county. Also confined to this coast, Trox perlatus [RDB1] (Trogidae) was last recorded in the British Isles from sheep carrion above Worbarrow Bay, but the species has not been found since 1930 and is also probably now extinct in this country.
The Isle of Purbeck heathlands south of Poole Harbour, especially Arne and Studland Heaths, is a wonderful area for the naturalist with many rare insects. The heath at ???? is almost certainly now the only site in the British Isles for the weevil Strophosoma fulvicorne [RDB2] (Curculionidae), where it may be sought on dune-heath in the spring and autumn. Studland is one of only two known sites in the British Isles for the corylophid Rypobius ruficollis [RDBK] (Corylophidae), found here in 1931 and perhaps still present. Studland Beach is the type locality of the unique female holotype of Aleochara phycophila (Staphylinidae), found in seaweed by A.A. Allen in 1932.
County recorder: , 56 Windsor Way, Alderholt, Fordingbridge, Hampshire SP6 3BN