Subject: Black Beetle
Location: Gard, France
November 2, 2014 3:31 am
Could you tell me what kind of beetle this is? I frequently see them wandering around the garden – when picked up, they grab onto your finger and then cover it in some kind of weird red liquid.
I assume they’re trying to pretend they bit you?
Either way, as such a frequent visitor, it’s a bit annoying not knowing their name!
The best we are able to provide at this time is a family name. This is a Darkling Beetle in the family Tenebrionidae. We did a quick search but could not find any matching images with identifications. Perhaps one of our readers will have better luck with a species name.
Ed. Note: Thanks to a comment from beetlehunter, we now know that this is actually a Leaf Beetle, Timarcha tenebricosa, which is well represented in online images including these images on Nature Spot and Panoramio. Nature Spot indicates the common name Bloody-Nose Beetle and states: “It earns its common name from its peculiar form of defence; when threatened it exudes a drop of bright red fluid from the mouth. The larvae are a metallic bluish colour.” That is illustrated on Fotonatura. It is very interesting that the species name in the binomial shares the same root as the family name Tenebrionidae, so the resemblance Darkling Beetles was noted by Fabricius when he named the beetle in 1775.