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Stenocranus species all have pale brown wings, often with a darker median stripe towards the apex, but they differ in several minor details of the head and forelegs. Separation of some species is difficult, and requires several features to be visible; specimens should be dissected for confirmation.
This species is distinguished by the very short, rounded vertex. The longitudinal stripes on the face are black and on the males' foreleg the 1st tarsal segment is pale (dark in S. major, from which is requires careful separation).
Local, mostly in southeast England, and associated with grasses and sedges, often in wet habitats.
Adult: June to September.
Length 5-6 mm
Wicken Fen, Cambs. (March 2009) ©Laurence