Species Account for Gonocerus acuteangulatus
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Taxonomic group: true bugs (Heteroptera) - Available county data
see British Bugs website
The author found an adult Box Bug in his garden in Grays on 24th August 2008, new to Essex. Just three days later a number of nymphs were beaten from rose scrub supporting a good quantity of rose hips in the Copper Mills area at Walthamstow as part of the current survey, and suspecting they might also be Box Bugs, I kept one alive to rear to an adult. Obligingly it moulted and matured on 2nd September, providing confirmation. The Box Bug has nationally Endangered status (RDB1) and was always a very rare insect known only from Box Hill in Surrey, where it was associated with Box on the brow of the hill. Then in 1990 it was first found away from Box Hill at Bookham Common, some 6 km to the north-west. Since that time it has continued to spread outwards and used new food-plants; certain hosts including hawthorn and rose, but nymphs and adults have also been found on a range of other berry-bearing shrubs, potential over-wintering sites such as pine, holly and ivy, as well as other trees and herbaceous plants (Hawkins 2003). In 2002 it was found in the Brighton area in Sussex, and since then also in Hampshire, Berkshire and Bristol (Evans & Edmondson 2005), as well as Kent (where I found at Ightham Mote in 2007) and in a garden in Peterborough in 2007 (P. Kirby, pers. comm.). References