INVERTEBRATES

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BUTTERFLIES

SPIDERS SLUGS LEOPARD SLUG
Convolvulus Hawk-moth Agrius convolvuli (Linnaeus, 1758)

Kongsfirvaldur / Agrius convolvuli (Linnaeus, 1758) (No 6828)

Kongsfirvaldur / Agrius convolvuli (Linnaeus, 1758) (No 6828) Kongsfirvaldur / Agrius convolvuli (Linnaeus, 1758) (No 6828)

Hoyvík 13.09.2014
This rare guest flew right up in front of Símun Dalsgaard, when he went out to mow the lawn in front of his house in Hoyvík. He caught it and gave it to me. This Convolvulus Hawk-moth does most likely come from France.

Plume Moth Platyptilia gonodactyla Den The. & Schiff

Platyptilia gonodactyla Den. & Schiff Platyptilia gonodactyla Den. & Schiff Platyptilia gonodactyla Den. & Schiff

On July 25, 2014 Gert Norðoy, Viðareiði caught a new Plume moth for Faroe Islands in Viðareiði. Since there are many Plume moth species I immediately sent some photographs to the Danish butterfly specialist Ole Karsholt, who determet, that it was a Platyptilia gonodactyla Den The. & Schiff.

The larva feeds on Coltsfoot Tussilago farfara. From this first and only catch it can not be said for certain, that it breeds in the Faroe Islands, but as Coltsfoot is spreading across the country as an invasive species like the Hairy lady's mantle Alchemilla mollis, this new Plume moth can easily have been breed here - we just can not prove it yet. The larvae lives inside the stem of Coltsfoot.
Coltsfoot Tussilago farfara

Loðið hóvblað / Tussilago farfara L. Klaksvík. Loðið hóvblað / Tussilago farfara L. Tórshavn. Loðið hóvblað / Tussilago farfara L. Klaksvík.


HoverflySyrphus torvus Osten Sacken, 1875.

Hoverfly female / Syrphus torvus Osten Sacken, 1875.

Hoverfly female / Syrphus torvus Osten Sacken, 1875. Hoverfly female / Syrphus torvus Osten Sacken, 1875.

Very common in the Faroe Islands

"Live" Christmas story from Klaksvík
Seven-spot ladybird

Seven-spot ladybird Seven-spot ladybird Seven-spot ladybird

The family of Ragnhild Ellingsgaard placed their newly acquired Christmas tree up in the living room two days before Christmas 2013, but after just 20 minutes everything under the tree was alive: ladybugs, spiders and other creepy crawlers enjoyed themselves, apparently planning to take over the entire living room. The family acted quickly - they threw the tree outside and vacuumed the whole house. 12 ladybirds were captured and put in a large glass with spruce and fruit, where they have enjoyed themselves until recently.
08. January 2014 Ragnhild discovered, that 2 of the ladybirds laid completely still, each with a cocoon between the legs. Ragnhild went on the internet to search for information and found, that the 2 ladybirds had contained a parasitoid larva.
Ragnhild sent the glass with the 12 Seven-spot ladybirds to me. 2 of them had a cocon with a parasitoid larva of the species Dinocampus coccinellae (Dinocampus terminatus) between the legs, and these are the first rigistered observations for the Faroe Islands.

Dinocampus coccinellae (Dinocampus terminatus) uses the ladybird as incubator: The parasitic vasp lay's her egg into the soft belly of the ladybird where it hatches into a larva. After 18-27 days the larva bites a small hole in the abdomen of the ladybird. Then the larva spins a cocoon between the legs of the ladybird, whose body is lying on top of the cocoon, while the larva undergoes its transformation. The wasp comes out of the cocoon after 6-9 days.
The larva brainwashes the ladybird, so it defends the vulnerable cocoon against enemies. The parasite takes control of its host's behavior. That’s why it is called "bodyguard manipulation".

N.B. Ragnhild's family has switched to plastic Christmas tree for the future, but I (Jens-Kjeld) clearly believe, that the "alive" Christmas trees is much more interesting, as there is always far more interesting surprises in the Christmas tree than under the tree!

Update: The first parasitoid vasp of the ladybirds was hatched 22. January 2014. The sting is clearly seen in the pictures where the wasp is on the back. The wasp is very quick in the movements, so it is not easy to photograph.

Dinocampus coccinellae (Dinocampus terminatus)
Dinocampus coccinellae (Dinocampus terminatus)

Dinocampus coccinellae (Dinocampus terminatus)

Dinocampus coccinellae (Dinocampus terminatus) Dinocampus coccinellae (Dinocampus terminatus) Dinocampus coccinellae (Dinocampus terminatus) Dinocampus coccinellae (Dinocampus terminatus)


Thick-legged hoverfly Syritta pipiens (Linnaeus, 1758)

Syritta pipiens (Linnaeus, 1758) Syritta pipiens (Linnaeus, 1758) Syritta pipiens (Linnaeus, 1758)

Breeds in very few number in the Faroe Islands


The unexpected Christmas guest in 2012 was a male Huebneria affinis (Fallén, 1810)
Unknown fly

Christmas Eve 2012 Jórun Biskopstø Simonsen from Klaksvík caught a nice hairy caterpillar on their Christmas tree. 26th December the larvae pupated, and Jórun came to Torshavn and gave me the glass with the cocoon. 10th January 2013 a fly came out of the cocoon, so the larva has apparently been infested with this parasite fly, which is a new species to the Faroe Islands.

Update: Walther Gritsch has been so kind to determine the species. It's a male Huebneria affinis (Fallén, 1810). The flies from Tórshavn are of the same species.

Christmas trees are a paradise for people interested in insects (entomology), but they are definitely not good for the Faroese nature.

The caterpillar, photo Jórun Biskopstø Simonsen The cocoon Unknown fly

Photo 1: The caterpillar, photo Jórun Biskopstø Simonsen. Photo 2: The cocoon. Photo 3: Unknown fly

Moth caterpillar

Moth caterpillar

Moth caterpillar Moth caterpillar Moth caterpillar

Rúni Poulsen found this caterpillar on his Christmas tree in Torshavn 20.12.2012. It is some moth caterpillar, but I don't know the species.

Update: 15. January 2013 four parasite flies hatched from this larva, presumably they are of the same type as the above mentioned from Klaksvík.


Coreus marginatus (Linnaeus 1758)

Coreus marginatus (Linnaeus 1758) Coreus marginatus (Linnaeus 1758) Coreus marginatus (Linnaeus 1758)

Coreus marginatus (Linnaeus 1758) is not observed in the Faroe Islands before, so Jacoba Thomsen on Nólsoy did a coup, when she found this one on her Christmas tree 20.12.2012.

Paravespula germanica

Paravespula germanica Paravespula germanica Paravespula germanica

German wasp queen Paravespula germanica found in Klaksvík 19.12.2012. She is eating of an orange slice.

Read more about wasps in Faroe Islands


Southern Green Shieldbug Nezara viridula found in Faroe Islands

Nezara viridula Nezara viridula Nezara viridula

12. November 2012 Kristina Eldevig caught a rare guest in a window in the nursery at Stella Maris in Torshavn. This is the first record of Southern Green Shieldbug Nezara viridula in the Faroe Islands.
Nezara viridula is a cosmopolitan species, found in a belt around the globe between 45 degrees north and 45 degrees south, and it can be a plague in for example bean and soybean fields. It is rare in for example Scandinavia, Germany and England.
How it has ended up in the Faroe Islands is impossible to say, but it has presumably arrived with a consignment of fruit or vegetables from southern Europe.

Article about new records of true bugs Heteroptera, found in Faroe Islands


Bibio pomonae (Fabricius, 1775)

Bibio pomonae (Fabricius, 1775) Bibio pomonae (Fabricius, 1775)

Bibio pomonae is common, especially on Suðuroy

NEW SPECIES OF BUMBLEBEE FOUND BREEDING IN THE FAROE ISLANDS

Bumblebee / Bombus pratorum (Linnaeus, 1761) Bumblebee / Bombus pratorum (Linnaeus, 1761) Bumblebee / Bombus pratorum (Linnaeus, 1761) Bumblebee / Bombus pratorum (Linnaeus, 1761)

Bumblebee / Bombus pratorum (Linnaeus, 1761) Bumblebee / Bombus pratorum (Linnaeus, 1761) Bumblebee / Bombus pratorum (Linnaeus, 1761) Bumblebee / Bombus pratorum (Linnaeus, 1761)
Bumblebee Bombus pratorum (Linnaeus, 1761)
The first bumblebee that we know of, was caught in the Faroe Islands in 1887. Since then there have been some very few observations from some of the different islands. Lately there has been an increasing amount of bumblebee observations, and even if we have no proof, everything interprets, that they breed here.
Bumblebee has breed in the Faroes in the past, especially in the Viking Age, when the climate was warmer then now.
In Iceland they had 3 different species of bumblebees, but this year the variety of species have increased with 2 new breeding species, counting 5 in all. In Shetland they have 6 different species.
The different species of bumblebee looks different as well as they vary in size and colour. Some are yellow and white striped and other are black and red behind. They do have one thing in common, they are built strong, they hum and they are hairy.
I am collecting all information’s about bumblebees in the Faroes, and in that connection I am interested in hearing from people who see or have seen bumblebees, perhaps have a photo or even might have caught one.
I am interested in any kind of information!
Contact me on phone 327064, e-mail jkjensen@olivant.fo or nolsoy@gmail.com
Bumblebee / Bombus pratorum (Linnaeus, 1761) Bumblebee / Bombus pratorum (Linnaeus, 1761) Bumblebee / Bombus pratorum (Linnaeus, 1761)
Bumblebee Bombus pratorum (Linnaeus, 1761)

Updated 14. July 2010: I was nearly bombarded with information’s from all over the country after the bulletin about bumblebees was spread in the news in the Faroese television "Dagur & Vika" 06. July. Everybody believed, they had or had seen bumblebees in their garden. Some were right, although most of the “bumblebees” showed to be Eristalis intricarius. Even if I am far from finished double-checking all the information’s, I can conclude, that bumblebees are breeding in the Faroe Islands, and I am of course still interested in any kind of information’s about this matter.

Hoverfly / Eristalis intricarius (Linnaeus, 1758) Hoverfly / Eristalis intricarius (Linnaeus, 1758) Hoverfly / Eristalis intricarius (Linnaeus, 1758) Hoverfly / Eristalis intricarius (Linnaeus, 1758)

Hoverfly Eristalis intricarius (Linnaeus, 1758)
Update 04. February 2012: The bumblebee species Bombus lucorum (Linnaeus, 1761) was observed breeding in the Faroe Islands for the first time in 2011. The breeding locations were in Strendur and Runavík in Eysturoy.

Bumblebee / Bombus lucorum (Linnaeus, 1761) Bumblebee / Bombus lucorum (Linnaeus, 1761) Bumblebee / Bombus lucorum (Linnaeus, 1761)

Bumblebee Bombus lucorum (Linnaeus, 1761)
Read more about bumblebees on the Faroes Islands

Eristalis pertinax (Scopoli, 1763)

Eristalis pertinax (Scopoli, 1763) Eristalis pertinax (Scopoli, 1763) Eristalis pertinax (Scopoli, 1763)

By seing these photographs it is easy to understand, how the hooverflies operate as transporters of the seed between the flowers.

WASP BEETLE Clytus arietis

Clytus arietis Clytus arietis

I caught this beautiful Longhorn Beetle Clytus arietis in my own basement in Nólsoy 20. April 2011. It's name Wasp Beetle comes from the look.


NEW ZEALAND FLATWORM Artioposthia triangulata

New Zealand Flatworm / Artioposthia triangulata New Zealand Flatworm / Artioposthia triangulata New Zealand Flatworm / Artioposthia triangulata New Zealand Flatworm / Artioposthia triangulata


THE FIRST DRAGONFLY IS OBSERVED IN FAROE ISLANDS

Anax ephippiger Anax ephippiger Anax ephippiger

On 13. April 2011 this Vagrant Emperor Anax ephippiger landed on Lúkka and Bjørn Patursson boat, as they were sailing from Koltur to Kirkjubøur. Adrian Parr determined the specie. Vagrant Emperor lives in Africa and Asia and is known for migranting to South- and mideurope. It has breed as North as in Denmark.

Hjørdis & Tekla Atladóttir 17.04.2011 Hjørdis & Tekla Atladóttir 17.04.2011 Hjørdis & Tekla Atladóttir 17.04.2011

Hjørdis & Tekla Atladóttir, Sandoy

15.04.2011 Tekla Atladóttir found a Dragonfly in Hornsbønum on Sandoy. Two days later she and her sister came on a visit together with their father where they handed me the Dragonfly. It appeared to be the second Vagrant Emperor, found in the Faroe Islands in 2011.

Tekla Atladóttir 17.04.2011

Hertha Ravnsfjall from Sandavágur put the washing out to dry Tuesday 13. April 2011. Later, when she wanted to fold it, a Dragonfly flew out of the laundry. Hans Ravnsfjall took this very fine photo of the Dragonfly, which made it possible for me to determine the species. Also it will be used to proof the third visit of a Anax ephippiger in Faroe Islands in 2011. Anax ephippiger

LAVEWING Wesmalius nervosus
Wesmalius nervosus
Only one species of Lacewing breeds in Faroe Islands and that is Wesmalius nervosus. This on the photo was caught by Dánial Jespersen in Tórshavn 06. October 2010.

Cyphostethus tristriatus (Fabricius, 1787)
Cyphostethus tristriatus (Fabricius, 1787) Cyphostethus tristriatus (Fabricius, 1787)
Cyphostethus tristriatus (Fabricius, 1787) is often imported on Christmas trees and other branches, used for Christmas decorations. I - Jens-Kjeld - am very interested in any kind of information about Shieldbugs, found in Faroe Islands, so kindly contact me in case you find any.

Link to relevant article about the subject by Jens-Kjeld and S. Tolsgaard


Propylaea 14-punctata

Propylaea 14-punctata Propylaea 14-punctata Propylaea 14-punctata

Gunnar Bjarnason found this 14-spotted Ladybug Propylaea 14-punctata indoor in Tórshavn in the beginning of November 2010.

Bluebottle Calliphora vicina

Bluebottle ♀ Calliphora vicina Bluebottle ♀ Calliphora vicina Bluebottle ♀ Calliphora vicina

Calliphora vicina is the most common Bluebottle in the Faroe Islands, and it is caught on every island except Lítla Dímun.

HORNTAIL Urocerus gigas

Horntail / Urocerus gigas Horntail / Urocerus gigas Horntail / Urocerus gigas

This female Horntail was caught outside a timber yard in Tórshavn 01. September 2010. Horntails are imported to the Faroe Islands for example as pupaes inside the imported timber.

LONGHORN BEETLE Cerambycidae

Longhorn beetle / Cerambycidae Longhorn beetle / Cerambycidae

This amazing alive Longhorn beetle entered Faroe Islands in the foot of this wood miniature sculpture - produced in China, which Fríðgerð Stakkslíð bought in Tórshavn.
Longhorn beetles caterpillars can live in the dry wood for many years, until they first reach the stage of a pupa and then a fully grown Longhorn beetle. There are more than 20.000 different Longhorn beetles, so I don’t know the accurate name of this one.

Longhorn beetle / Cerambycidae

Helophilus pendulus (Linnaeus, 1758)

Helophilus pendulus (Linnaeus, 1758) Helophilus pendulus (Linnaeus, 1758) Helophilus pendulus (Linnaeus, 1758) Helophilus pendulus (Linnaeus, 1758)


DEATH'S-HEAD HAWK-MOTH Acherontia atropos (Linnaeus, 1758)
On 10.09.2009 this photographed Death's-Head Hawk moth was caught in Miðvágur. Seven years old Tóra Mouritsen sent it to me for closer examination. The first Death's-Head Hawk moth was caught 20. October 1933 and this is the ninth observation for the Faroe Islands.
Death’s-head Hawk-moth / Acherontia atropos (Linnaeus, 1758)

COMMON WASP Vespula vulgaris

In 2000 the must discussed subject in the Faroe Islands was, whether the wasps would survive the winter. I don't think, anybody is in doubt today...

Read the Faroese article "Verða vespurnar verandi" from Frøði in 2001, which is still relevant today.

Inside the wasps' nest

WEEVIL
A lot of plants, trees, fruits and vegetables are imported to the Faroe Islands almost without any restriction. As a side effect a lot of creepy crawlers are imported such as this not yet determined weevil, found in a supermarket at christmas 2008.
DK snudebille / GB weevil.

LIGIA OCEANICA

Høgni Thomsen found this woodlouse in Nólsoy 31.12.2008.
4 species of woodlice are registered in the Faroe Islands, whereof Ligia oceanica is the largest.

Ligia oceanica.

INVASION OF HOVERFLIES
Scaeva pyrastri.
Metasyrphus corollae.
Syrphus vitripennis.
Episyrphus balteatus.
Scaeva pyrastri.
Neistabressa
Reðurbressa
Sunnanbressa
Tvírandabressa
Nólsoy 5. juli 2008

After a week with Eastern winds, the biggest invasion - as far as I know, of migrating hoverflies arrived in the Faroes.
95 % were of the species Metasyrphus corollae. Status: Common migrant in the Faroe Islands.
2 % were of the species Scaeva pyrastri. Status: Only registered 2 times earlier in the Faroe Islands.
2 % were of the species Episyrphus balteatus. Status: Common migrant in the Faroe Islands.
1% were of the species Syrphus vitripennis. Status: Rare migrant in the Faroe Islands.

I counted 23 Metasyrphus corollae in 4 square metres, and that is a lot in Faroe Islands.

Annleyg Patursson and Jens-Kjeld Jensen have spent a lot of time and effort finding the right names for the Faroese moths and butterflies. They are still busy finding new names for the new "Faroese" butterflies, so even though they finished the updating of this list already in in 2002, it will be updated regularly.
Complete list with Faroese moth and  butterfly names.

Yet again Jens-Kjeld Jensen has made an effort for the Faroese nature by registrating and naming the Faroese hoverflies.
Name and checklist of the Faroese hoverflies.

BUMBLE BEE

This bumble bee was caught in Skálabotnur in August 2007. Bumble bee is not registered in Faroe Islands since 1887.

UK version of the article "Exotic Faroe Islands" from Dimmalætting 11. Sep. 2007

Bumble bee

CONVOLVULUS HAWK MOTH Agrius convolvuli

Eydna Jacobsen found this Convolvulus Hawk Moth in the institution Fjálgalon in Klaksvík 17. August 2007. This is the first report for 2007.

Notice, how big the hawk Moth is on the keyboard. Photo: Eydna Jacobsen.

Agrius convolvuli. Photo: Eydna Jacobsen.

TICKS Ixodes
Ixodes uriae.

PINE WEEVIL Hylobius abietis

Líggjas Hansen found this Pine Weevil Hylobius abietis in Kollafjørður 1. august 2007.

Hylobius abietis.

Sirex juvencus

Robert Thomsen caught this beautiful Sirex juvencus in Tórshavn 9. July 2007.

Sirex juvencus

ICHNEUMON WASP Rhyssa persuasoria

Rúni Andersen gave me this beautiful wasp May 16. 2007. The wasp is probably imported with some timber. Rhyssa persuasoria occurs in coniferous forest in the summer where it drills into the timber to lay its eggs on the larvae of Sawflies, that live in the timber.
Rhyssa persuasoria.

BLOWFLIES (Diptera, Calliphoridae) of  the Faroe Islands.

Some 20 people have collected blowflies around the Faroes in 2005 and 2006. The total catch was app. 1300 blowflies, and the idea is to continue the catching in 2007. There seems to be a big variety in the species from island to island, but when I determined the 1300 species the variety was as follows:
Calliphora vicina Rob. 55%
Calliphora uralensis Vill. 30%
Calliphora vomitoria L. 8%
Protophormia terraenovae Rob. 4%
Cynomya mortuorum Linn. 3%

Cynomya mortuorum Linn.
Calliphora vicina Rob.
Calliphora uralensis Vill.
Calliphora vomitoria L.
Protophormia terraenovae Rob.
Cynomya mortuorum Linn.
Calliphora vicina Rob. ♀
Calliphora uralensis Vill. ♂
Calliphora vomitoria L. ♀
Protophormia terraenovae Rob. ♂
Cynomya mortuorum Linn. ♂

Recently ants and grasshopper are found in the Faroe Islands

Read the ant article

myre1.jpg (32102 byte)

grashoppe.jpg (87038 byte)
Read the grasshopper article


Eristalis pertinax male. This is a new specie for the Faroe Islands, common in summer 2003

Episyrphus balteatus.

Eristalis pertinax male. This is a new specie for the Faroe Islands, common in the summer 2003

Episyrphus balteatus is a common immigrant


New louse Actornithophilus piceus lari found in Nólsoy

Late Dec. 2004 Rśni went "noršur į Boša" to shoot some gulls. Afterwards, while Jens-Kjeld examined the birds, he found 22 specimen of Actornithophilus piceus lari - or rather a whole family of lice. I believe everyone can imagine the joy Jens-Kjeld felt finding these lice, which he has been looking for these past 8 years!
Cloose-up photo of the new louse. Runi hunting. Carrying the birds home.
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