Currently viewing the category: "Blister Beetles"
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Subject: black beauty
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
October 25, 2014 7:49 pm
This black beauty was photographed today, Oct 25 in a ravine in Toronto, Ontario Canada. It was about 1-1/14″ long and moving steadily through a grassy area. We thought it looked like it was full of eggs or something since its abdomen was so huge compared to the head and thorax.
Signature: anne murphy

Oil Beetle

Oil Beetle

Dear Anne,
This distinctive insect is an Oil Beetle, a species of Blister Beetle in the genus
Meloe.  According to BugGuide:  “Males smaller than females, with modified antennae” and several images of the modified antennae are included.  Your close-up image of the Oil Beetle’s head appear to show the modified antennae, so though you suspected this to be a gravid female, we believe it is a male Oil Beetle.

Head of Oil Beetle

Head of Oil Beetle

Thank you so much Daniel!  I am so glad you could identify that insect.  Now I’ll look it up and learn more about it.  So, the female would be even bigger.  Wow!  Hope we come across one some day.  Thanks again.
anne

 

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What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination
Mating Oil Beetles

Mating Oil Beetles

Subject: Blue Beetle
Location: Castine Maine
October 11, 2014 10:10 am
Multiple Blue Beetle apparently copulating in path October 5, 2014 in Castine ME. I write a nature column in a local newspaper and wish to include this. I tried three photos before and it would not go. I’ll try one this time.
Signature: Peter

Dear Peter,
These are mating Blister Beetles in the genus
Meloe, and they are commonly called Oil Beetles.  We have numerous examples of mating Oil Beetles on our website.

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Subject: What is this?
Location: Kindersley, Saskatchewan, Canada
August 15, 2014 9:15 pm
Found this beetle (?) dying on my concrete this evening. I live in Kindersley, Saskatchewan. It has a brilliant metallic green body, head of a wasp and dusty purple shell that does not run the full length of it’s body. It has been quite warm and humid lately for August and I was not sure if that is why it was around because I have never seen one before.
Signature: Stacey Herbert

Blister Beetle

Blister Beetle

Dear Stacey,
This is a Blister Beetle in the family Meloidae, and we generally prefer a dorsal view for identification purposes, but your description that includes the coloration has us relatively confident that your individual is Nuttall’s Blister Beetle,
Lytta nutalli, which is frequently reported from Canada.  Blister Beetles should not be handled as they often secrete a compound known as cantharidin that is known to cause blistering in human skin.

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Subject: Bug eating tomato leaves
Location: Northern Shenandoah valley va
August 14, 2014 5:37 pm
This bug is all over out garden in northwestern virginia.
I would like to know what it is.
Signature: “Bugged out” in va

Margined Blister Beetle

Margined Blister Beetle

Dear Bugged out in VA,
This is a Margined Blister Beetle,
Epicauta funebris, and though BugGuide does not indicate any food preferences, we have received other reports of Margined Blister Beetles feeding on the leaves of tomatoes and other vegetables and ornamental garden plants.  In My Kitchen Garden discusses Blister Beetles in organic vegetable gardens.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Oil Beetles?
Location: Colorado Springs Colorado
July 25, 2014 5:52 pm
Saw these guys while walking the dog today. This was in Colorado Springs, a place I have lived for 25+ years and never seen one of these let alone two “connected” Would love a positive ID.
Signature: Howard

Mating Oil Beetles

Mating Oil Beetles

Dear Howard,
You are correct that these are mating Oil Beetles, Blister Beetles in the genus
Meloe.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Beetles in Portugal
Location: Serra da Mamede, Portugal
June 29, 2014 12:39 am
Hi,
We came across these very striking beetles in dry grassland in eastern Portugal. There were several pairs, apparently biting each other’s tails. They are about two inches long with big black and red abdomens. Please can you tell me what they are?
Signature: Peter Burrows

Red Striped Oil Beetles

Red Striped Oil Beetles

Dear Peter,
You are astute to recognize these Red Striped Oil Beetles,
Berberomeloe majalis, as beetles, as they are not characteristically beetle-like in appearance.  We have several images of this species of Blister Beetle in our archives from Spain as well as Portugal.  We are curious about the behavior they are exhibiting, which you liken to “tail biting” and we can’t help but to wonder if this is some type of courtship behavior.

Dear Daniel,
Thank you very much for the identification.
Peter Burrows

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination