Location: Cheviot Hills, northern England
May 10, 2011 5:49 pm
Two insects of a type I’ve never seen before getting friendly. I was just wondering what they were.
These amorous beauties are mating Tiger Beetles in the genus Cicindela, and they are most likely Cicindela campestris, commonly called the Green Tiger Beetle. We quickly located a webpage on British Biodiversity that profiles the Green Tiger Beetle and that provides this information: “They show greater diversity in the warmer parts of the world and only five species of tiger beetle are known in Britain (current British checklist of the Carabidae at http://www.coleopterist.org.uk/). Of these, four are Cicindela species, with C. campestris much the most common.
Tiger beetles constitute the subfamily Cicindelinae within the family Carabidae, or are still recognised by some authors as a separate family, the Cicindelidae. C. campestris is, like most Cicindela species, a creature of open ground, especially heathland on sandy soils in spring and early summer, locally frequent apparently in much of Britain where there is suitable habitat. It runs fast when seizing prey, or if disturbed (or if someone is chasing it in the hope of an in-focus photograph), and it will also readily fly for short distances.” In addition to England, the species is found over much of Eurasia as far East as Siberia.