Wasp Beetle

Clytus arietis


The Wasp Beetle is a small, narrow-bodied longhorn beetle. The larvae live in warm, dry, dead wood, such as fence posts and dead branches, and particularly favour willow and birch. The adults can be found feeding on flowers along woodland rides and hedgerows during the summer. The Wasp Beetle lives up to its name by mimicking the Common Wasp in both colouration and in its behaviour, moving in a jerky fashion similar to a wasp's flight. This mimicry keeps it safe from predators, even though it is actually harmless.

How to identify

The Wasp Beetle is black with yellow bands on the body, and relatively short antennae. There are several other black and yellow longhorn beetles, but most have more pointed bodies and longer antennae.

Where to find it

Widespread in England and Wales, but rare in Scotland.


When to find it

  • May
  • June
  • July

How can people help

The Wildlife Trusts manage many nature reserves for the benefit of all kinds of wildlife, from bugs to butterflies, fish to Foxes. 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
Wasp Beetle
Latin name
Clytus arietis
Length: 1.6cm
Conservation status