Re: Africa Wild Insect Book: Beetles - Photos & Descriptions

Fri Jul 04, 2014 11:35 pm

CMR Bean Beetle Hycleus oculatus
Family: Meloidae. Subfamily: Meloinae. Tribe: Mylabrini

Image © BluTuna
Shingwedzi, Kruger National Park

Description
Large (body length 27mm). Head and pronotum black. Antennae orange, except for the 2 basal segments, which are black. Elytra black with 2 basal yellow spots and 2 broad transverse yellow bands, the posterior one sometimes red. Colour variants include one with red bands on elytra and all-black antenna.

Taxono mic Note
This species was formerly classed as Mylabris oculata. Bologna & Pinto (2002) showed that the genus Mylabris does not occur in Africa.

Habitat
Diverse. Often seen swarming on flowers, particularly on Acacia.

Biology
Adults feed on flowers, often damaging ornamental garden plants and cotton, beans, peaches, citrus and other crops. Larvae, however, regulate the number of grasshoppers (including plague locusts) by parasitizing their egg pods.

Image © steamtrainfan
Pilanesberg

Image © Sprocky
Grietjie Private Nature Reserve (Balule Nature Reserve)

Re: AW Insect Book: Beetles - Photos & Descriptions

Sat Jul 12, 2014 12:17 pm

Armoured Darkling Beetle Anomalipus sp.
Family: Tenebrionidae. Subfamily: Tenebrioninae. Tribe: Pedinini

Image © BluTuna
Kruger National Park, Balule camp

Re: AW Insect Book: Crickets, Grasshoppers & Locusts - Photo

Wed Aug 06, 2014 11:33 pm

Ground Beetle Termophilum burchelli burchelli
Family: Carabidae. Subfamily: Harpalinae. Tribe: Anthiini

Image © Flutterby
Pilanesberg

Description
Body size very large, length up to 45 mm. A flightless ground beetle with prominent, powerful, sharp mandibles, fast runner and capable of squirting an irritating fluid in defence. All black. Yellow patches on the sides of the pronotum and striped-looking grooved elytra, circumscribed with a yellow line.

Re: AW Insect Book: Beetles - Photos & Descriptions

Wed Dec 10, 2014 4:21 pm

Spider Monkey Beetle Lepithrix pseudolineata
Superfamily: Scarabaeoidea. Family: Scarabaeidae. Subfamily: Melolonthinae or Rutelinae. Tribe: Hopliini

Image © Tina
West Coast National Park

Description
Small (body length 9 mm). Head black, with yellow hairs on face. Pronotum black, outlined with yellow scales and with 2 yellow stripes in centre. Elytra brownish, each with a yellow line along inner margin and long black hairs, especially round margins. Underside densely covered in long golden hairs. Legs long and slender.
Larve small and C-shaped.

Taxonomic note
Monkey beetles are scarab beetles, a group of several genera within the tribe Hopliini. The placement of this tribe within the family Scarabaeidae is uncertain between Melolonthinae and Rutelinae.

Distribution
Western Cape.

Habitat
Succulent Karoo.

Biology
Very active flier, seen only in spring, often on mesems.
Larvae feed on organic matter in sandy soil.

Re: AW Insect Book: Beetles - Photos & Descriptions

Wed Dec 10, 2014 4:40 pm

Monkey Beetle Lepisia braunsi
Superfamily: Scarabaeoidea. Family: Scarabaeidae. Subfamily: Melolonthinae or Rutelinae. Tribe: Hopliini

Image © Tina
West Coast National Park

Taxonomic note
Monkey beetles are scarab beetles, a group of several genera within the tribe Hopliini. The placement of this tribe within the family Scarabaeidae is uncertain between Melolonthinae and Rutelinae.

Re: AW Insect Book: Beetles - Photos & Descriptions

Fri Dec 12, 2014 7:42 pm

Fruit Chafer Leucocelis adspersa
Superfamily: Scarabaeoidea. Family: Scarabaeidae. Subfamily: Cetoniinae. Tribe: Cetoniini

Image © BluTuna
Kruger National Park, Nhlanguleni

Description
Approximately 18 mm in length. It is usually very dark green and may appear black. Very rarely, the wing covers are a lighter green, and some specimens are known to have reddish wing covers. This chafer has creamy-coloured speckles on the wing cover and thorax, a pattern that can vary a little. It is one of the few Leucocelis species with long hairs on the underside and only a narrow part in the middle.

Dark bronze, brighter on the prothorax, the outer margin of which has a somewhat narrow reddish band reaching from the apex to the base, but this band is occasionally quite obliterated; the elytra are dark green or green with a faint reddish tinge ; the pygidium is very dark red, and occasionally dark bronze; palpi and antennal club rufescent. Head very closely punctulate; prothorax moderately closely punctate, the punctures separated by an interval about equal to their own diameter in the anterior part, but more than double that width in the posterior, in the discoidal part are two rows consisting each of three white impressions, and there are two similar impressions in the outer marginal part; scutellum impunctate; elytra moderately attenuate towards the posterior part, and hardly impressed near the humeral part, the double rows of punctures in the first two intervals are more or less distinct, and so is the double one outside the discoidal costa which is well raised, the defiexed part is punctate sub-seriate, but the punctures arc very shallow, and on each elytron are three rows of white macules; under side greyish pubescent especially on the pectus and femora; pygidium closely shagreened scrobiculate, and having two or three small white macules on each side, these macules are occasionally wanting; sternal process quite transverse.
(Catalogue of the Coleoptera of South Africa)

Distribution
Common in the Eastern part of South Africa, down to Natal.

Re: AW Insect Book: Beetles - Photos & Descriptions

Mon Jan 05, 2015 7:42 pm

Savanna Fruit Chafer Dischista cincta
Superfamily: Scarabaeoidea. Family: Scarabaeidae. Subfamily: Cetoniinae. Tribe: Cetoniini

Image © Sprocky
Grietjie Private Nature Reserve (Balule Nature Reserve)

Description
A medium sized green-brown beetle. In dry areas the dorsal and ventral colours turn lighter. Pronotum edged with orange. There are two oblique, ochre spots on the the last abdominal segment (pygidium) which the similar Dischista rufa lacks.

Distribution
South Africa, Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Tanzania.

Habitat
A common species in the savannah woodland of South Africa.

Re: AW Insect Book: Beetles - Photos & Descriptions

Sat Jan 24, 2015 12:29 pm

Clerine Checkered Beetle
Suborder: Polyphaga. Series: Cucujiformia. Superfamily: Cleroidea. Family: Cleridae. Subfamily: Clerinae

Image © BluTuna

Image © BluTuna
Kruger National Park, Balule

Cleridae are a family of beetles of the superfamily Cleroidea. They are commonly known as checkered beetles. The Cleridae family has a worldwide distribution, and a variety of habitats and feeding preferences. Cleridae have a large number of niches and feeding habits. Adults are found on flowers, foliage of woody plants and tree trunks, and are sometimes attracted to lights. Most genera are predaceous and feed on other beetles and larvae; however other genera are scavengers or feed on pollen and bectar.
Female Cleridae lay between 28–42 eggs at a time predominately under the bark of trees. Larvae are predaceous and feed vigorously before pupation and subsequently emergence as adults. The slender, cylindrical larvae, some of which are brightly coloured, commonly occur in dead wood. They prey on larvae of wood-boring beetles and grasshopper egg pods, or parasitize bees and wasps. Others feed on stored animal products or carrion.

Clerids have elongated slightly flattened and parallel-sided bodies with large heads and bristly hairs, are usually bright colored, and have variable antennae. Checkered beetles range in length between 3 and 24 mm. Most are brightly coloured, some banded brown, black and white. The antennae are clubbed at the tip for most species, but others can be serratae. The pronotum region is nearly cylindrical and characteristically narrower than the elytra (special hardened front wings), while the head is as wide or wider than the pronotum. Their elytra have tiny pits or depressions, and never expose more than two tergites (dorsal plates).
Their tarsal formula is 5–5–5, meaning that on each of the front, middle and hind legs there are 5 tarsomeres (individual subsegments of the feet/tarsi). One or more of these subsegments on each leg is typically lobed, and the 4th tarsi is normally difficult to distinguigh. Furthermore, an important feature that eliminates many other families of beetles is that Clerids' front coxae (base of the leg) expose the second segment of the legs known as the trochanter.
The second defining characteristic of the Cleridae family is that Clerids never have eversible vesicles (small usually hidden balloon-like structures thought to be scent glands) on their abdomen and pronotum. This characteristic distinguishes them from a similar family Melyridae which sometimes has these glands. This trait is very important in correctly differentiating checkered beetles from Melyridae.

Re: AW Insect Book: Crickets, Grasshoppers & Locusts - Photo

Wed Feb 11, 2015 7:34 am

Predatory Ground Beetle Termophilum fornasinii, Anthia fornasinii
Family: Carabidae. Subfamily: Harpalinae. Tribe: Anthiini

Image © BluTuna
Kruger National Park, Balule camp

Description
Very large (body length 48 mm), black. Head and pronotum lightly punctured. Elytra with longitudinal grooves and scattered bristles, and pale-coloured hairs around margins. Legs relatively stout.

Habitat
Subtrobical forest and savannah.

Biology
Ground dwelling. Nocturnal, sometimes attracted to areas illuminated by lights.

Links: Field Guide to Insects of South Africa. Mike Picker, Charles Griffiths, Alan Weaving

Re: AW Insect Book: Beetles - Photos & Descriptions

Tue Mar 03, 2015 3:15 pm

Small Green Dung Beetle Gymnopleurus humeralis
Suborder: Polyphaga. Family: Scarabaeidae. Subfamily: Scarabaeinae. Tribe: Gymnopleurini

Image © BluTuna

Image © BluTuna

Image © BluTuna
Kruger National Park, Nwanetsi

In Africa South of the Sahara, the tribe Gymnopleurini is represented by three genera: Garreta (12 African species of which 7 occur in South Africa); Allogymnopleurus (14 African species of which 3 occur in South Africa and 2 in Mozambique) and Gymnopleurus (32 African species of which 12 occur in South Africa and 5 in Mozambique).

Description
Body length 12 mm. A ball-rolling dung beetle.

Distribution
Northeast of southern Africa.

Habitat
Mesic savanna.

Image © BluTuna
Marakele National Park, Limpopo