Where To Find Beetles  Back to county index  Back to species index


The Grampian region of Scotland's northeast includes a wide range of habitats from coastal cliffs and sands to the east and north with mountains to the south and southwest. Much of the inland parts of Aberdeenshire and Buchan are mixed arable and livestock farms and are relatively uninspiring from an touristic or entomological viewpoint. However there are some lowland mosses in this area although most have been degraded by draining and peat cutting. The most promising is the Red Moss of Netherley (NO 8694), an SSSI managed by the Scottish Wildlife Trust. This and others would repay 

To the west, Grampian is contiguous with the Highland region which is home to many RDB species, particularly around the upper Spey valley. Grampian includes part of the Cairngorm plateau and the southern Cairngorms where one might find alpine and boreal species such as Amara alpina [RDB3] (Carabidae), Bisnius scoticus (Staphylinidae) [RDB K] and Olophrum assimile [RDB I] (Staphylinidae).

A particularly productive habitat is the Caledonian Pine forest, remnants of which are to be found in Deeside, in the south of the region. Glen Tanar (NO 4794) and Ballochbuie (NO 2089) are two of the more extensive, but smaller stands of old Scots Pine Pinus sylvestris are to be found throughout Deeside. Associated with Scots Pine are Pissodes validirostris [RDB3] (Curculionidae), Chrysanthia nigricornis [RDB2] (Oedemeridae), Ostoma ferrugineum [RDB2] (Peltidae), Ampedus tristis [RDB2] (Elateridae) and Leptura sanguinolenta [RDB3] (Cerambycidae). The birch Betula and alder Alnus woods in damper parts of the area, as in Ballochbuie, could be home to Rhopalodontus perforatus [RDB3] (Ciidae), Rhynchaenus testaceus [RDB2] (Curculionidae), Bolitophagus reticulatus [RDB3] (Tenebrionidae) and there are old records of Cryptocephalus decemmaculatus [RDB2] (Chrysomelidae) from the area, the latter two species from Fomes. While in Deeside it would be worth examining deer dung for Cercyon alpinus [RDBK] (Hydrophilidae). This area is very similar in character to upper Speyside but has been neglected by comparison and would repay a visit.

Attractive habitats to the west of the region are the shingle banks on the rivers Spey and Findhorn. The Five-spot Ladybird Coccinella quinquepunctata [RDB3] (Coccinellidae) is common at the mouth of the River Spey (NJ 3563). One would not be too surprised also to discover here Negastrius pulchellus [RDB2] (Elateridae), Dyschirius angustatus [RDB3] (Carabidae), Thinobius major [RDBK] and Lathrobium dilutum [RDB3] (Staphylinidae).

While the better-known localities will undoubtedly produce interesting species, the more 
useful effort would be to collect from the almost virgin areas to the centre and northeast of the region where the more enterprising coleopterist could be well rewarded.

County recorder: , Wester Duncanstone, Insch, Aberdeenshire AB52 6YX.