Sun, Feb 15, 2009 at 7:28 PM
Daddy’s no bug expert, and in fact is not fond of bugs at all, but when asked by the budding naturalist what kind of bug he had found in a friend’s yard, Daddy thought this was probably a rhinoceros beetle, or something like that. Right or wrong?
Gavin (Daddy), Caleb (Budding Naturalist) and Isaac
Dear Daddy, Caleb and Isaac,
This is a male Eastern Hercules Beetle, Dynastes tityus, and it is indeed one of the Rhinoceros Beetles. We haven’t received an image of this species since our site migration in September, and we are guessing this is not a recent photo as sightings generally occur during the summer months.
Oh, good 🙂
Actually, we just took that photo on my iPhone the same day that I sent it to you. Caleb has the beetle in a big box right now, with plants and rocks and dirt from where he found it, and was wondering what to feed it …
Hi again Daddy Gavin,
According to the University of Kentucky Entomology Website: “The feeding habits of the adult beetles are not well-known, but they have been observed to eat rotten fruit and the bark of ash trees. ” According to BugGuide: “Adults feed on rotting fruit, sap, to some extent.” Tell Caleb to try feeding him over-ripe bananas.
Excellent! That’s what we will do. We have him in a terrarium now, and he seems to be enjoying his habitat, and is very active right now.
Urge to Release: Thursday, February 19, 2009
Hi again Gavin,
Several of our readers have posted comments urging Caleb to release this noble male Eastern Hercules Beetle, and we are inclined to agree. Caleb has now had several days to observe the specimen and now if released, he may be lucky enough to find a mate and perpetuate the species.