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Cantharis livida

Below one of the more difficult species, for it appears in two variations. Most seen is a light reddish yellow appearance. But quite often the dark reddish brown variation keeps popping up. In German the common name of this animal is well choosen: the "variable soft-wing". The dark form looks like many other soft-wings, especially the Hogweed Bonking Beetle. Yet the differences are not that difficult to see. Cantharis livida has a black forhead, the legs change from red to black and while the Hogweed Bonking Beetle has the last part of the shields darkened, those of Cantharis livida are darker on the front. This is a common species, and sometimes even abundant species in many parts of Britain and a very common to abundant species on the continent.