is this some kind of Blister Beetle?
Hi, just found your web site – awesome bugs.
I am in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan and found this beautiful bug on a poppy leaf this afternoon. The only thing that I can find that sort of resembles it is the blister beetle, however it has a dull plain back and only the head parts and some of the under belly are iridescent. Can you ID? Thanks
Your are correct. This is a Blister Beetle. We believe it is in the genus Lytta. We found a match on BugGuide, also from Canada, but it is not identified to the species level. We will contact Eric Eaton to see if he can comment.
Update: (07/28/2008) From Eric Eaton
Hope your lecture at the Getty went well! … Your identifications of the blister beetles are correct to genus. There is no easy way to determine species without having a collection to compare to, or the specimen in hand to run through a “key.” Lots of individual variation in color (and pattern in the case of Pyrota) makes ID impossible from an image alone. … I think that covers all your questions. Keep up the great work.