Subject: bug in Boquete Panama
Location: Boquete, Panama
September 8, 2014 1:27 pm
We spotted this bug on our house wall and have never seen one before. From top to bottom it is around the size of a drink can! It has been there for hours and shows no signs of going anywhere soon.
Most images that we receive of Harlequin Beetles, Acrocinus longimanus, are very poor quality, but your image is stunning. Your beetle is a male which can be distinguished by the extremely developed front legs. According to Encyclopedia Britannica: “The common name refers to the beetle’s gaudy pattern; the Latin longimanus of the species name refers to the extremely long forelegs of the males. These legs are usually longer than the beetle’s entire body, which can measure nearly 76 mm (3 inches). In addition to serving as a sexual advertisement to females, the long legs help the males to traverse the branches of trees (the beetles fly as well as crawl). Despite the seemingly conspicuous colours, the harlequin hides itself effectively among the lichen- and fungus-covered trunks of tropical woods such as fig trees.”