Sawflies - Subfamily Pterygophorinae 

Family Pergidae

This page contains pictures and information about Sawflies in subfamily Pterygophorinae that we found in the Brisbane area, Queensland, Australia. They are sometimes known as Long-tailed Sawfly.

Sawflies in the Pterygophorinae subfamily are usually banded with bright colours, either orange and yellow, with darken wings. Some species males have comb-like antenna. 
Larvae in this subfamily feed on leaves of different native plants. They have six or more pairs of prolegs and a "tail" on the last segment. They do not aggregate in large group. They feed actively in small group during the day.

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Lophyrotoma zonalis, adult body length 20mm
This sawfly is dark blue in colour with orange spots on thorax and orange rings on abdomen. Its wings are dark blue as well. We found this sawfly active flying among young gum trees in Alexandra Hill in mid summer. The larva was found during mid summer in Alexandra Hill. Please also visit this page for more information and pictures.
Green Long-tailed Sawfly
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Lophyrotoma interrupta, larva length 25mm
Sawfly Larvae feeding on gum tree leaf. The brown one found on the ground near the gum tree. Both are 30mm in length. When disturbed, they life up their black needle like tails. Please check this page for more information.
Red Long-tailed Sawfly
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Lophyrotoma sp., body length 10mm to 30mm
On a young gum tree, we found quite a lot of this sawfly larvae feeding on the leaves. They fed together side by side. The larger larvae mixed with the small one, feed on leaf starting at the same edge until finished. We have more information in this page.

Paperbark Sawfly Larvae
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Pterygophorus sp., larva length 30mm
This sawfly larvae feed on leaves of Paperbark (Melaleuca sp.). Pictures were taken on Dec 2007.
1. Pergidae of the World - An online catalogue of the sawfly family Pergidae (Symphyta), Zoologische Staatssammlung München, 2009.  
Ironbark Sawfly Larvae
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Pterygophorus sp., larva length 30mm
We found these three sawfly larvae in Karawatha Forest on a Ironbark Gumtree. It was Apr 2010. When we came watching closely, two raise their tail and one drop onto ground play dead.  
Bottlebrush Sawfly Larvae
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Pterygophorus cinctus, body length 15mm                                                                                      Photo thank to Colin Burt in Hervey Bay
The pictures shows young larvae skeletonising leaves of Bottlebrush (Callistemon). Larger larvae eat whole leaves.

1. Pergidae of the World - An online catalogue of the sawfly family Pergidae (Symphyta), Zoologische Staatssammlung München, 2009.
2. Insects of Australia, CSIRO, Division of Entomology, Melbourne University Press, 2nd Edition 1991, pp 931.
3. Family PERGIDAE - Australian Faunal Directory, Australian Biological Resources Study. 

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Last updated: October 18, 2010.