What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Bug with wispy secondary set of antenna
May 27, 2010
Dear WhatsThatBug,
I found this interesting little guy on the ceiling in my kitchen. It is currently Spring where I live and the outside temp is about 80 degrees. I took some pictures after I caught him in a jar and then a few outside when he was released. I found him to be especially intriguing due to the fact that he has a small pair of antenna and then large ones that I would describe as feather-like. Initially I thought they were wings coming of his head, but upon closer inspection I saw they were whispy thin antler-like antenna. So please tell me…What’s that bug?
Kari
New Jersey

Fire Colored Beetle

Hi Kari,
What gorgeous images of a Fire Colored Beetle, Dendroides concolor.  Here is what BugGuide has to say:  “Adults are active at night, and may be attracted to lights. Some species may be attracted to fermenting baits.  Male pyrochroid beetles seek out blister beetles, climb onto them and lick off the cantharidin the blister beetles exude. Not only have these beetles developed a resistance to the cantharidin, they use the blistering agent to impress a female of their own species who then mates with them, whereupon most of the cantharidin is transfered to the female in the form of a sperm packet. The eggs the female subsequently lays are coated with cantharidin to protect them from being eaten before they hatch.
… Jim McClarin

Fire Colored Beetle

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

One Response to Fire Colored Beetle

  1. Cindie Owen says:

    I just found one of these fire colored beetles crawling on my floor. Its spring here. I’ve never seen one bef6. I’m not sure how it ended up in my house though. There’s no fire wood for it to hitch a ride on, so I’m baffled. If you have any ideas, I’d love to hear your thoughts. I’d actually prefer they stay under a piece of wood outside rather than finding their way into my home. I’m really hoping he was alone!

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