Larger than normal for Berkeley
Wed, Jul 1, 2009 at 4:39 PM
I’ve found the insects here in Berkeley to be generally fewer and less varied than where I grew up in rural Wisconsin. But a few weeks before I move back to the midwest this one turned up on my bedroom ceiling two nights ago. I’ve never before seen one in Berkeley. The body is 1 inch long and 0.25″ inch wide, and each antenna is 1.25″. I kept her occupied with a raisin during the photoshoot, which she seemed to appreciate. What is it?
Finally something large and not a crane fly
Berkeley, CA

Eucalyptus Borer

Eucalyptus Borer

Hi Finally,
This is a Eucalyptus Borer in the genus Phoracantha. There are two species with the same common name. Phoracantha recurva and Phoracantha semipunctata were both accidentally introduced from Australia. The two species are quite similar and we don’t feel qualified to determine which of the species you have found. The larvae bore in the wood of eucalyptus trees.

Thank you for the response!  Between those two, it seems to be clearly a Phoracantha semipunctata, based on the description and P. semipunctata photo here…
…and the P. recurva photo here…
— Finally

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