We came across a couple of Hawthorn Shieldbugs, Acanthosoma haemorrhoidale, on a large hawthorn hedge at the edge of our local park yesterday. This is a strong contender for the most beautiful British shieldbug, large and shiny, with bright green and red markings, finely punctured and with broad, pointy "shoulders". They are found in a range of trees and shrubs, but their favourite food is haws, the berry produced by the Hawthorn, although they also feed on leaves or other fruit such as apples, piercing them with their rostrum, their sucking, needle-like mouthpart. As other shieldbugs, they overwinter as adults, often darkening their colours at the end of autumn, and emerge in the spring to feed and mate. Eggs are laid around May and the nymphs develop during the summer into increasingly larger stages quite different in colour to the adults. The new adult generation would emerge in August.
Until recently, the Hawhorn shieldbug was common only in southern england, but his distribution has expanded north recently and now can be found in Scotland too.