Broad Necked Root Borer
My Boy Scouts and I found this insect outside my tent at Ockanickon Scout Reservation near Pipersville, Pennsylvania last week (07/08). It was about 2 inches long and what was fascinating was that it appeared to take a defensive posture and extended its “stinger” (propably not the right term but I am rather insect identification challenged!) I found your website and went through the beetle sections. I think it’s a Broad Necked Root Borer, but didn’t see any with the “stinger”. Your opinion, and an explanation of the “stinger” would be greatly appreciated and educational for the Scouts. This is an awesome website! Thank you,
Your Broad Necked Root Borer, Prionus laticollis, is a female, and the stinger is her ovipositor. She needs a means by which to deposit her eggs deep inside the wood.