What beetle is this?

What beetle is this?

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I've found it in my kitchen. It seems to be that he flew through the window from the street.

The country is Russia.

This is Mealworm beetle, Tenebrio molitor, a species of darkling beetle.

Thank you @terdon for help!

I am not an entomologist, I just happen to have worked on the genome of the red flour beetle, Tribolium castaneum and this looks very similar. A quick wikipedia search turned up the amusingly named "confused flour beetle", Tribolium confusa, which looks almost exactly like what you have photographed:

So, I would guess (I stress that I don't really know) that this is some sort of Tribolium species and, by now, is thoroughly confused even if it was not to begin with.

The diabolical ironclad beetle can survive getting run over by a car. Here’s how

The diabolical ironclad beetle looks sort of like a rock — and it’s almost as unbreakable. Thanks to the intricate connections between different parts of the insect’s exoskeleton, this hardy beetle can withstand getting run over by a car.

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October 21, 2020 at 11:00 am

The diabolical ironclad beetle is like a tiny tank on six legs.

This insect’s rugged exoskeleton is so tough that the beetle can survive getting run over by cars, and many would-be predators don’t stand a chance of cracking one open. Phloeodes diabolicus is basically nature’s jawbreaker.

Analyses of microscope images, 3-D printed models and computer simulations of the beetle’s armor have now revealed the secrets to its strength. Tightly interlocked and impact-absorbing structures that connect pieces of the beetle’s exoskeleton help it survive enormous crushing forces, researchers report in the Oct. 22 Nature. Those features could inspire new, sturdier designs for things such as body armor, buildings, bridges and vehicles.

The diabolical ironclad beetle, which dwells in desert regions of western North America, has a distinctly hard-to-squish shape. “Unlike a stink beetle, or a Namibian beetle, which is more rounded … it’s low to the ground [and] it’s flat on top,” says David Kisailus, a materials scientist at the University of California, Irvine. In compression experiments, Kisailus and colleagues found that the beetle could withstand around 39,000 times its own body weight. That would be like a person shouldering a stack of about 40 M1 Abrams battle tanks.

Within the diabolical ironclad beetle’s own tanklike physique, two key microscopic features help it withstand crushing forces. The first is a series of connections between the top and bottom halves of the exoskeleton. “You can imagine the beetle’s exoskeleton almost like two halves of a clamshell sitting on top of each other,” Kisailus says. Ridges along the outer edges of the top and bottom latch together.

This slice of a diabolical ironclad beetle’s back shows the jigsaw-shaped links that connect the left and right sides of its exoskeleton. These protrusions are tightly interlocked and highly damage-resistant, helping give the beetle its incredible durability. David Kisailus

But those ridged connections have different shapes across the beetle’s body. Near the front of the beetle, around its vital organs, the ridges are highly interconnected — almost like zipper teeth. Those connections are stiff and resist bending under pressure.

The connective ridges near the back of the beetle, on the other hand, are not as intricately interlocked, allowing the top and bottom halves of the exoskeleton to slide past each other slightly. That flexibility helps the beetle absorb compression in a region of its body that is safer to squish.

The second key feature is a rigid joint, or suture, that runs the length of the beetle’s back and connects its left and right sides. A series of protrusions, called blades, fit together like jigsaw puzzle pieces to join the two sides. These blades contain layers of tissue glued together by proteins, and are highly damage-resistant. When the beetle is squashed, tiny cracks form in the protein glue between the layers of each blade. Those small, healable fractures allow the blades to absorb impacts without completely snapping, explains Jesus Rivera, an engineer at UC Irvine.

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This toughness makes the diabolical ironclad beetle pretty predator-proof. An animal might be able to make a meal out of the beetle by swallowing it whole, Kisailus says. “But the way it’s built, in terms of other predation — let’s say like a bird that’s pecking at it, or a lizard that’s trying to chew on it — the exoskeleton would be really hard” to crack.

That hard exterior is also a nuisance for insect collectors. The diabolical ironclad beetle is notorious among entomologists for being so fantastically durable that it bends the steel pins usually used to mount insects for display, says entomologist Michael Caterino of Clemson University in South Carolina. But “the basic biology of this thing is not particularly well-known,” he says. “I found it fascinating” to learn what makes the beetle so indestructible.

The possibility of using beetle-inspired designs for sturdier airplanes and other structures is intriguing, Caterino adds. And with the splendid variety of insects all over the world, who knows what other critters might someday inspire clever engineering designs.

Questions or comments on this article? E-mail us at [email protected]

A version of this article appears in the November 21, 2020 issue of Science News.

Show/hide words to know

Adaptation: a structure or behavior that helps an organism survive and reproduce.

Environment: the area (environment) where living things or groups of living things normally live. Also called the natural environment. more

Habitat: the place where an animal or plant lives.

Proboscis: a long mouth part found in most insects and some other animals used to suck up food.

Species: typically a group of organisms that are so similar that they can interbreed (have offspring). more

Butterfly drinks nectar from a flower using its long uncoiled proboscis. Image by C.J. Kazilek.

It’s a warm day and you are on a walk in the local park. You see a large colorful butterfly as it floats out of the shade and onto a sunlit flower. It pauses, uncurls its long tongue and sips some nectar before it flutters off to the next flower. This may seem like the perfect relaxing life, but being an insect is hard and dangerous work.

Like other insects, butterflies are under constant stress. They have many decisions to make that can be a matter of life and death. On which plant should I lay my egg? Where will I get my next meal of nectar? Can I make it across this open area without being eaten by a swooping kingbird?

A butterfly's life may be difficult, but there are other insects that have an even harder time surviving.

Scarab beetle

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Scarab beetle, (family Scarabaeidae), any of approximately 30,000 species of beetles (insect order Coleoptera) that are compact and heavy-bodied insects with robustly oval outlines. They are distinguished from other beetles by their unusual antennae, each of which terminates in three flattened plates that fit together to form a club. The outer edges of their front legs are often toothed or scalloped to facilitate digging. These beetles vary in length from 5 mm (0.2 inch) for the smaller species to 12 cm (4.7 inches) for the African goliath beetle (Goliathus giganteus), which is one of the heaviest known insects.

Scarab beetles vary considerably in habits, with many species feeding on manure or on decomposing plant materials, others on growing roots or leaves, and a few on fungi. The family Scarabaeidae includes the subfamilies Cetoniinae (see flower chafer), Melolonthinae (see chafer June beetle), Rutelinae (see shining leaf chafer), Scarabeinae (see dung beetle), and Dynastinae (see rhinoceros beetle).

The family includes several agricultural pests, including June beetles (or June bugs), rose beetles, and the Japanese beetle. The dung beetle Scarabaeus sacer was sacred to the ancient Egyptians. Scarab beetles are one of the most popular families with insect collectors because of the large size and beautifully coloured, hard, highly polished forewings of many species.

The Editors of Encyclopaedia Britannica This article was most recently revised and updated by Adam Augustyn, Managing Editor, Reference Content.

What beetle is this? - Biology

KINGDOM: Animalia | PHYLUM: Arthropoda | CLASS: Insecta | ORDER: Coleoptera | FAMILY: Passalidae (bess beetles)

Bess Beetles are large beetles in the scientific family Passalidae that live in decaying wood. They are most closely related to Scarabs (Scarabidae) and Stag beetles (Lucanidae). Like all beetles, bess beetles have chewing mouthparts and hardened front wings (elytra) that meet in a straight line down the back of the abdomen when closed. Adult bess beetles are characterized by their large, rounded bodies and a very shiny, black exoskeleton. This smooth exoskeleton allows them to move freely through the tunnels they construct in rotten logs using their large, powerful mandibles. Bess beetles have characteristic "lamelliforme" antennae &ndash that is, medium length antennae with comb or finger-like projections at the ends. While their cuticle is often jet black as adults, young newly emerged adults will appear bright red for a few weeks after pupation while their exoskeleton hardens and darkens. Adults produce a very distinct squeaking or hissing sound when disturbed. Males and females of the common Kentucky bess beetle look virtually identical and have no external differences in appearance.

Bess Beetle Antenna (Jessica Lawrence, Eurofins Agroscience Services,

Larvae look similar to other common beetle larvae in that they are large white grubs, but they are more elongate and less C-shaped than scarab or stag beetle larvae. They are also most very easily identified by their &lsquomissing&rsquo hind legs. Like all insects, bess beetles have 6 legs, however during their larval stage the last pair of legs are modified into a scraper that rubs a rigid file on their middle pair of legs, resulting in a squeaking sound similar to, but quieter than, that of the adults. Adults provide parental care for larvae so both age groups can be found in the same rotten wood habitat simultaneously.

Bess Beetle Larva (Gerald J. Lenhard, Louisiana State University,

Bess beetles spend the majority of their lives inhabiting rotten logs. They appear to feed on logs that are approximately two years old until all of the cambium layer (area between the bark and wood) has been ingested. Bess beetles provide an immensely beneficial forest service by recycling dead wood material. These beetles are common in hardwood forests and prefer oak, hickory, and maple logs, although they can be found in just about any hardwood log of the appropriate decay stage in the eastern U.S.

Adult Bess Beetle, showing red coloration shortly after emergence (J. Dillard, 2012)

Bess beetles are not considered pests, although they are capable of further damaging wooden structures, such as bridges, that are already in a late state of decay. Bess beetles are typically considered beneficial insects because they recycle dead wood material in the forest.

GENUS & SPECIES: Odontotaenius disjunctus
There is only a single species of bess beetle found in Kentucky, Odontotaenius disjunctus. It goes by several names, including the &lsquopatent leather beetle&rsquo, &lsquohorned passalus&rsquo, or simply &lsquobess beetle&rsquo. This beetle is found throughout the eastern U.S. and is fairly common throughout its range.

Bess Beetle, aka "Horned Passalus"
(Herbert A. 'Joe' Pase III, Texas Forest Service,

Bess beetles can be collected at all times of the year by searching decaying hardwood logs. They are typically found between the bark and heartwood layer of the wood, but can be found deeper in the log if the wood is particularly rotten. Larvae can be found throughout the summer in these logs and adults can be found year-round. Adults may also be caught at black lights, often approaching the light source on foot since they rarely fly.

Although there is only one species in Kentucky, there are over 500 species of bess beetles in the world. The majority live in the tropics and only two species are found in temperate regions &ndash Odontotaenius disjunctus, which is found throughout the eastern U.S. and Cylindrocaulus patalis in Japan.

Bess beetle larvae produce a begging call with their hind- and middle-pairs of legs that they use to solicit food from their parents.

Bess beetle adults are able to produce 14 different calls, which is more than what is known for any other insect!

Have you heard any myths, legends, or folklore about bess beetles? If so, let us know.

Show/hide words to know

Eclose: to change from the pupal form into the adult form.

Larva: the second, "worm-like" stage in the life cycle of insects that undergo complete metamorphosis (like caterpillars).

Metamorphosis: dramatic change in body form. more

Moult: shedding of the skin so the animal can grow.

Pupa: resting stage during which tissues are reorganized from larval form to adult form. The pupa is the third body form in the life cycle of insects that undergo complete metamorphosis (like caterpillars).

Pupate: to change from the larval form into the pupal form.

Beetle Life Cycle

Some beetles can display extremely intricate behaviour when mating. Smell is thought to play an important part in the location of a mate.

Conflict can play a part in the mating rituals of some species such as burying beetles where conflicts between males and females rage until only one of each is left, this ensures reproduction by the strongest and fittest. Many beetles are territorial and will fiercely defend their small patch of territory from intruding males.

Beetles will pair for a short time, however, in some cases pairing can last for several hours. During this period, sperm cells are transferred to the female to fertilise the egg.

Parental care varies between species, ranging from the simple laying of eggs under a leaf to certain scarab beetles, which construct underground structures complete with a supply of dung to house and feed their young. Other beetles are leaf rollers, biting sections of leaves to cause them to curl inwards, then laying their eggs where they are protected inside.

Beetles, like other insects, go through a complete process of metamorphosis in which it goes through four stages of development.

It begins with the female beetle laying hundreds of tiny, oval white or yellow eggs, usually on a leaf or in rotten wood. (Some female beetles keep their eggs inside of them and give birth to live larvae). It usually takes from 4 – 19 days for the eggs to hatch. They then enter into the ‘larval stage’.

At this stage, they will eat a tremendous amount of food and continue to grow, shedding its exoskeleton many times while it grows. Most beetles pass through 3 – 5 stages during the larval period and some can even have up to 30 stages whereas other beetles can have only 1 stage as larvae.

It then enters into the ‘pupal stage’ which can take up to 9 months and usually happens over the winter period. After pupating, an adult emerge, and there you have your beetle.

This beetle will then feed, mate and if it is a female, she will lay eggs for the beginning of another generation.

Beetle Defence during metamorphosis

Beetles and their larvae have a variety of strategies to avoid being attacked by predators or parasitoids (an organism that spends most of its life attached to or within a single host organism which it ultimately kills and often consumes in the process). These include camouflage, mimicry (a situation where one organism, the mimic, has evolved to share common outward characteristics with another organism), toxicity and active defence.

Camouflage involves the use of colouration or shape to blend into the surrounding environment. Among those that exhibit this defensive strategy are some of the leaf beetles (family Chysomelidae), having green colouring very similar to their habitat on plant leaves. More complex camouflage also occurs, as with some weevils, where various coloured scales or hairs cause the beetle to resemble bird dung.

Another defence that often uses colour or shape to deceive potential enemies is mimicry. A number of longhorn beetles (family Cerambycidae) bear a striking resemblance to wasps, which fools predators into keeping their distance even though the beetles are in fact harmless.

Many beetle species, including ladybirds and blister beetles, can secrete distasteful or toxic substances to make them unpalatable or even poisonous. These same species often exhibit ‘aposematism’, where bright or contrasting colour patterns warn away potential predators.

Large ground beetles and longhorn beetles may go on the attack, using their strong mandibles to forcibly persuade a predator to seek out easier prey. Others, such as bombardier beetles spray acidic gas from their abdomen to repel predators.

Survivor beetles

An analysis revealed that size truly does matter, at least when trying to make toads upchuck. Larger beetles were more likely to survive than small beetles, and small toads were more likely to vomit than large toads, the researchers found. This is likely because "large beetles can eject more defensive chemicals than small beetles, [and] large beetles are more likely to survive the toad digestive system than small beetles [are]," the researchers wrote in the study.

As for the amphibians, "small toads have a lower toxic tolerance than large toads," the researchers wrote.

The investigators also found that the beetles fared better in the B. japonicus stomachs, with an 82 percent survival rate, compared to a 72 percent rate for B. torrenticola toads. It appeared that although B. torrenticola had a higher rate of vomiting, it also had more-potent digestive abilities than the other toad. [40 Freaky Frog Photos]

In Japan, the bombardier beetle lives around more B. japonicus toads than B. torrenticola toads, the researchers said. Perhaps, B. torrenticola has a lower tolerance for the beetles' surprising spray because that toad rarely encounters it, the researchers said.

The scientists noted that the experiments did not seriously harm or kill the toads, which were released back into the wild after the trials. The researchers couldn't, however, say the same for the beetles.

What beetle is this? - Biology

Coral pink sand dunes tiger beetle. Credit: USFWS.

Coral pink sand dunes tiger beetle. Credit: Mark Capone / USFWS.

Coral pink sand dunes tiger beetle trio. Credit: Mark Capone / USFWS.

Coral pink sand dunes tiger beetle (Cicindela albissima)

The coral pink sand dunes tiger beetle (Cicindela albissima) is an insect in the order Coleoptera (beetles), and there are 109 species of tiger beetles in the genus Cicindela (common tiger beetles) in the United States and Canada. The coral pink sand dunes tiger beetle occurs only at the coral pink sand dunes geologic feature in southern Utah and is separated from its closest related subspecies, the Great Sand Dunes tiger beetle (C. theatina), by over 600 kilometers (km) (378 miles (mi)). The coral pink sand dunes tiger beetle occurs sporadically throughout the coral pink sand dunes geologic feature, but is concentrated in two populations—central and northern—which are separated by 4.8 km (3 mi). The total range of the species is approximately 202 hectares (500 acres) in size.

The coral pink sand dunes tiger beetle adults are 11 to 15 millimeters (0.4 to 0.6 inches) in length and have striking coloration. Their large wing cases (known as elytra) are predominantly white except for a thin reddish band that runs down the length of the center. Much of the body and legs are covered in white hairs. The upper thorax (middle region) has a metallic sheen, and their eyes are particularly large.

Coral pink sand dunes tiger beetles are active predators, attacking and eating prey with their large and powerful mandibles (mouthparts). The species requires high body temperatures for maximal predatory activity, and lower body temperatures will reduce their activity and feeding behavior. Coral pink sand dunes tiger beetles can run or fly rapidly over the sand surface to capture or scavenge for prey, and adults feed primarily on ants, flies, and other small arthropods.

Similar to other tiger beetles, the coral pink sand dunes tiger beetle goes through several developmental stages. These include an egg, three larval stages (known as &ldquoinstars,&rdquo with each instar separated by molting), pupa, and adult. Total estimated adult population size has ranged from 600 to 3,000 individuals, and is based on field surveys from 1999 through 2015.

Primary stressors to the coral pink sand dunes tiger beetle are off-highway vehicle use and climate change. We worked with State and County partners to develop a Conservation Agreement and subsequent amendments in 1997, 2009, and 2013. The Conservation Agreement resulted in the implementation of conservation efforts for the tiger beetle including: (1) the establishment of protected conservation areas where OHV use is prohibited (2) annual monitoring to evaluate population status, habitat, and population response to conservation actions (3) development of translocation protocols (4) protection of island habitats and their connectivity and (5) enforcement of protection of the conservation areas. These conservation measures are effective at providing substantial protection for the coral pink sand dunes tiger beetle and have resulted in a stable self-sustaining population of the species.

On May 3, 2013, the Service reopened the comment period for our listing and critical habitat proposal for an additional 30 days. On October 2, 2012, we published a proposed rule to list the tiger beetle and accepted comments from the public until December 3, 2012. We are reopening the comment period for our listing and critical habitat proposal for an additional 30 days to allow the public to comment on the proposal, the associated draft Economic Analysis (DEA), the Draft Environmental Assessment, a Conservation Agreement amendment, and the amended required determinations section. Comments on the rule must be received on or before June 5, 2013.

  • Federal Register: May 3, 2013 Proposed Threatened Status for Coral Pink Sand Dunes Tiger Beetle and Designation of Critical Habitat : May 3, 2013 Service Announces Availability of an Amendment to a Conservation Agreement for the Coral Pink Sand Dunes Tiger Beetle

On October 2, 2012, the Service proposed to protect the species under the Act, and is seeking new information from the public and the scientific community that will assist the agency in making a final determination.


Bombardier beetles inhabit all the continents except Antarctica. [4] They typically live in woodlands or grasslands in the temperate zones but can be found in other environments if there are moist places to lay their eggs.

Most species of bombardier beetles are carnivorous, including the larva. [5] The beetle typically hunts at night for other insects, but will often congregate with others of its species when not actively looking for food. [6]

There are two large glands that open at the tip of the abdomen. Each gland is composed of a thick walled vestibule which contains a mixture of catalases and peroxidases produced by the secretory cells that line the vestibule. Both glands are also made up of a thin-walled and compressible reservoir which contains an aqueous solution of hydroquinones and hydrogen peroxide. [1]

When the beetle feels threatened it opens a valve which allows the aqueous solution from the reservoir to reach the vestibule. The catalases lining the vestibule wall facilitate the decomposition of hydrogen peroxide, as in the following theoretical reaction:

H 2 O 2 ( aq ) ⟶ H 2 O ( l ) + 1 2 O 2 ( g ) >>

The peroxidase enzymes facilitate the oxidation of the hydroquinones into quinones (benzene-1,4-diol into 1,4-benzoquinone and analogously for methylhydroquinone), as in the following theoretical reaction:

The known net reaction, which further accounts for the theoretical reaction of the H 2 ( g ) >> and 1 2 O 2 ( g ) >> products of the previous reactions, is: [1]

C 6 H 4 ( OH ) 2 ( aq ) + H 2 O 2 ( aq ) ⟶ C 6 H 4 O 2 ( aq ) + 2 H 2 O ( l ) >>

This reaction is very exothermic, and the released energy raises the temperature of the mixture to near 100 °C, vaporizing about a fifth of it. The resultant pressure buildup forces the entrance valves from the reactant storage chambers to close, thus protecting the beetle's internal organs. The boiling, foul-smelling liquid is expelled violently through an outlet valve, with a loud popping sound. The beetles' glands store enough hydroquinone and hydrogen peroxide to allow the beetle to release its chemical spray roughly 20 times. In some cases this is enough to kill a predator. [7] The main component of the beetle spray is 1,4-benzoquinone, an irritant to the eyes and the respiratory system of vertebrates.

The flow of reactants into the reaction chamber and subsequent ejection occur in a series of about 70 pulses, at a rate of about 500 pulses per second. The whole sequence of events takes only a fraction of a second. These pulsations are caused by repeated microexplosions which are the results of the continuous pressure on the reservoir and the oscillatory opening and closing of the valve that controls access to the reaction chamber. This pulsed mechanism is beneficial for the beetles' survival because the system uses pressure instead of muscles to eject the spray at a constant velocity, saving the beetle energy. Also, the reintroduction of new reactants into the vestibule where enzymes are stored, reduces the temperature of the chamber, thereby protecting the peroxidases and catalases from thermal denaturation. [8]

Typically the beetle turns its body so as to direct the jet towards whatever triggered the response. The gland openings of some African bombardier beetles can swivel through 270° and thrust between the insect's legs, discharging the fluid in a wide range of directions with considerable accuracy. [9]

The full evolutionary history of the beetle's unique defense mechanism is unknown, but biologists have shown that the system could have evolved from defenses found in other beetles in incremental steps by natural selection. [10] [11] Specifically, quinone chemicals are a precursor to sclerotin, a brownish substance produced by beetles and other insects to harden their exoskeleton. [12] Some beetles additionally store excess foul-smelling quinones, including hydroquinone, in small sacs below their skin as a natural deterrent against predators—all carabid beetles have this sort of arrangement. Some beetles additionally mix hydrogen peroxide, a common by-product of the metabolism of cells, with the hydroquinone some of the catalases that exist in most cells make the process more efficient. The chemical reaction produces heat and pressure, and some beetles exploit the latter to push out the chemicals onto the skin this is the case in the beetle Metrius contractus, which produces a foamy discharge when attacked. [13] In the bombardier beetle, the muscles that prevent leakage from the reservoir additionally developed a valve permitting more controlled discharge of the poison and an elongated abdomen to permit better control over the direction of discharge. [10] [11]

The unique combination of features of the bombardier beetle's defense mechanism—strongly exothermic reactions, boiling-hot fluids, and explosive release—has been claimed by creationists and proponents of intelligent design to be an example of irreducible complexity. [2] Biologists such as the taxonomist Mark Isaak note however that step-by-step evolution of the mechanism could readily have occurred. [3] [14]

Watch the video: National Geographic. Σκαθάρι Βομβαρδιστής (December 2022).