Subject: Nice Rhino? Beetle
Location: Southern Illinois
June 17, 2012 10:43 pm
This is from a few weeks ago, a work neighbor found this and let me take some pic’s What is this beautiful specimen called?
Signature: JimmyDean

Giant Stag Beetle

Dear JimmyDean,
This is a Giant Stag Beetle or American Stag Beetle,
Lucanus elaphus, and it received both its common and scientific names based on the enlarged mandibles of the male Stag Beetle which resemble the antlers of a stag.  Here is a nice etomylogical explanation from BugGuide:  “Apparently species name is something of a reference to vertebrate zoology. The European Stag Beetle is Lucanus cervus. Cervus is Latin for deer/stag, and also the genus name for the European Red Deer, Cervus elaphus. (That species is holarctic, and called Elk or Wapiti in North America.) Elaphus is apparently a Greek word for deer. So the name elaphusis a reference to the Greek for deer or, more likely, to the scientific name for the Red Deer, for which the European Stag Beetle was also named. Very cute. (Based on Internet searches and correspondence, below.)  Thanks to Maria Fremlin for help on the origin of the scientific name and for pointing out that ‘Giant Stag Beetle’ is the more accepted common name.”

Giant Stag Beetle


Location: Illinois

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