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A RARE bug has been found at the Conigre Mead Nature Reserve as a result of last year’s Bio-Blitz undertaken by Melksham residents.
The Box Bug, a rarity which until recently was only found at Box Hill in Surrey, is a small brown shield bug and the finding is the first recorded in Wiltshire.
The bug was found last September as a team took to the Conigre Mead Nature Reserve for a Bio-Blitz which is a method of recording in a short time as many species, animals and plants on one site. The blitz found a huge number of insect species as well as uncommon plants, some small mammals and lots of spiders and snails.
A photograph was sent to British Bugs in London where experts confirmed the identification.
Gill Cardy from Conigre Nature Reserve said, “It is exciting news for us as it highlights some of the fascinating and wonderful wildlife we have here. The Wildlife Trust is particularly interested as it is rare to find the Box Bug and until recently there had been no sightings anywhere other than in Surrey. When we sent it to the British Bugs in London we didn’t expect to hear back so soon but almost immediately they told us and it really is exciting After the huge success of last year’s bio-blitz we are going to host another event in the summer and who knows what else we will uncover. This should put Melksham on the map!
“Which brings us to a request that anyone finding any interesting species to send a photo or drawing to us, or send it to the Wiltshire and Swindon Biological Record Centre at the Wiltshire Wildlife Trust in Devizes.”