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Larva on boletus

Posted: Thu Mar 11, 2021 5:27 pm
by Charles Erb
Can anybody please tell what these larvae are? found on a boletus in an East Sussex wood November 2020. Thanks
Charles Erb

Re: Larva on boletus

Posted: Fri Mar 12, 2021 12:06 pm
by Lancashire Lad
HI, and welcome to UK Fungi.

I doubt very much whether anyone will be able to offer any confident suggestions from the photo provided.

There are several species of "Fungus Flies" associated with boletes, and from what I understand, even identifying the adult flies is rather difficult, let alone the larval stages.

( PDF avalable here: - ... Part03.pdf )

lists: -
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and goes into further detail on the relevant pages.

But I would suggest that identification of these "Mycetophilidae" is really a subject for experienced entomologists.


Re: Larva on boletus

Posted: Fri Mar 12, 2021 1:54 pm
by Simon Horsnall
Perhaps a little to add to Mike's excellent summary. Whilst known host data is provided in the Handbook, host specificity has been poorly studied, mostly through difficulties in rearing the species through (too wet, too dry, etc) but also I suspect because entomologists don't routinely identify fungi and mycologists don't routinely study insects. Complicating all of this is the lack of coverage of the Handbook. It omits the largest subfamily (the Mycetophilinae) and is not complete in the families/subfamilies it does cover (the Keroplatinae has been elevated to family status).

As Mike says, even the adult flies are beyond most people and can only reliably identified by posting specimens to the national recorder, Peter Chandler.


Re: Larva on boletus

Posted: Wed Mar 17, 2021 9:11 am
by adampembs
On behalf of Charles, thank you both for your thorough replies.

It would be nice if people thanked respondents or even read their replies. Charles has not logged in since he asked the question.

Re: Larva on boletus

Posted: Thu Apr 08, 2021 2:21 pm
by Charles Erb
Hi Folks,
Charles has logged in now, not wishing to hustle any experts.
Thank you for your response, I should have guessed that it wont be simple, little about mycology is.
It so often happens that the caps are infested with some insect but this was so large and extensive, that I thought it might seem like a silly question. Luckily, I am not an eater of fungus and when meet people contemplating it, I warn them to look carefully: it often puts them off. In my youth I did try some A. Rubescens and A. Fulva apart from the usual obvious ones but can't see the point. I used to be modestly competent at identifying the most usual ones but went away for a while and all the names changed! I should join a local group to revise. These days I photograph the beautiful and interesting ones.
We have little toadstool activity around East Sussex at this time of year but clearly your site goes on.
Thanks again for your response, I will try to visit more often.
Best Regards to all,
Charles Erb