Terrestrial Invertebrates

We have recorded 220 priority species of invertebrate in Sussex, including species of moth, spider, beetle and mussel.

Green-brindled Crescent

Photo: Graeme Lyons

Biodiversity Action Plan terrestrial invertebrate species recorded in Sussex

This includes…

Brown-banded Carder Bee A declining bumble bee of flower-rich grasslands becoming increasingly rare in South East England. The only SxBRC records are from Rye Harbour and Rye Golf Course 1997-2001.

Fen Raft Spider First discovered in Britain in 1956, this large aquatic spider has been recorded from Pevensey Marshes, East Sussex since 1992. There are only two other colonies known in Britain, and it is classified as Endangered and given full protection under the Wildlife and Countryside Act. It is also declining across much of its mainland European range.

Field Cricket The field-cricket is an extremely rare, declining and vulnerable insect which, in the UK, is restricted to one natural population, consisting of three sub-populations, within one square kilometre in West Sussex. Two reintroduced populations have been established, both of which are also in West Sussex.

Freshwater Pea Mussel A declining mussel of canals, rivers and ponds in central and southern England and thought to be sensitive to some forms of pollution. Recorded in our area only from Harting, West Sussex in 1969 and 1970.

Marsh Mallow Moth This Red Data Book species only occurs in two parts of Kent and one part of Sussex. In Sussex it is only known from Moneypenny Farm on the edge of Romney Marsh north of Rye. Recent records indicate that it may colonise Rye Harbour where Marsh Mallow plant has been planted. Caterpillars feed on the roots of Marsh Mallow.

Stag Beetle A beetle of broadleaved woodland, parks, other pasture woodland and gardens. The larvae live in the decaying wood of deciduous trees, often in roots and stumps. Widely recorded from West Sussex but rare in East Sussex and apparently absent from much of the vice-county.

Starlet Sea Anemone A sea anemone of brackish lagoons in southern and eastern England. Recorded in our area only from Pagham Harbour and pools at Hermitage close to the Hampshire border.

Sussex Diving Beetle Water beetle typical of marshes near the sea, although not necessarily in brackish water. Very rare from Kent to Yorkshire but recorded from several suitable sites across East and West Sussex.

Wart Biter Cricket A large cricket of warm, mainly calcareous hillsides. It is on the edge of its range in the British Isles and now known in only five colonies in southern and south eastern England. There are two colonies in our area in our area, both on the East Sussex downs.

Text: Sussex Biodiversity Record Centre

More information about terrestrial invertebrates

Bees, Wasps and Ants Recording Society (bees, wasps and ants)
British Arachnological Society (spiders)
British Dragonfly Society (dragonflies)
Buglife (invertebrates)
Bumblebee Conservation Trust (bumblebees)
Butterfly Conservation (butterflies and moths)
Conchological Society of Great Britain and Ireland (molluscs)
Dipterists Forum (flies)
Spider Recording Scheme (spiders)
Sussex Branch of Butterfly Conservation (butterflies)
Sussex Dragonfly Group (dragonflies)
Sussex Moth Group (moths)