Anyone know a Coleopterist?

A good afternoon in the garden today. The sun was warm and the breeze pleasant. A fair bit of weeding and clearing in the flower beds, some attention given to the tomato plants, all the veg received a good water and one of the raised beds has shiny copper tape edging to keep the slugs at bay.

A chance discovery on a log in the shade at the top of the garden has led to a bit of a research on the interweb and in ‘Collins British Insects’ tonight, but I’m still a little undecided on the identification of this beetle. I favour the Lesser Stag Beetle Dorcus parallelopipedus, but it could be a female Stag Beetle Lucanus cervus.

The book says three spines on the tibiae (part of the leg above the foot) for the Stag, with only one spine on the Lesser, but I can’t see clearly in the picture and didn’t know to look at the time.

What do you think?

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