Rhinocerous beetle? in France
July 22, 2009
We found this in our garden in south west France – which is in a wood next to a river – it flew hard into a window one evening and lay around for the next day looking a bit stunned. As you can see it wouldn’t let go of my husband’s shirt and he had to take it off with the bug still attached. He said it was making a ‘pht’ sound – is that likely? She’s still alive in these photos.
Anyway, after lots of looking on your site it seems to be a female rhinocerous beetle of some kind? Is that right? She was about 4cm (an inch and a half) long.
Ceret, south west France
Your beetle is not a Rhinoceros Beetle, but it is a Scarab Beetle, the same family as a Rhinoceros Beetle. We believe your beetle is a Fruit and Flower Chafer in the subfamily Cetoniinae, but we have not had any luck web searching with that information. Perhaps one of our readers will be able to provide an answer. Karl are you out there?
I live in Turkey and we call those ‘May Bug’. This is from genus of ‘Polyphylla’ and can be ‘Polyphylla fullo’. They horrifies some people because they sound ’ssssssss’ when you close’em.
A web search of Polyphylla fullo produced a photo that matches the one submitted. We are inclined to agree that we misidentified the Scarab and that is is in reality a June Beetle. The Forestry Images website calls this species a Pine Chafer. We also found additional photos of this beetle feeding on pine.
Karl also comes through
The scarab from France is in the family Melolonthidae, which is sometimes listed as a subfamily of Scarabaeidae, depending on which taxonomic system you choose. The genus is Polyphylla and, although there are probably at least a few similar species, it looks very close to P. fullo. Common names given include June Beetle and Pine Chafer; one reference indicated that the larvae attack the roots of hazelnut. The base color varies between brown and black and the individual in Sue’s photo is a female, since it lacks the prominent pectinate antennae. Regards.