Subject: Black Beetle (?) with White Stripe
Location: SE New Mexico Nature Trail
October 10, 2015 11:47 am
Thank you for identifying my Metallic Borer Beetle on October 4th, 2015. I found this guy / gal a little further down the same nature trail. It was just running across the trail when I snapped the photo. As with the first beetle, I tried looking this one up on your site and on the web in general and had no luck. As with the prior beetle, this one was on a nature trail in SE New Mexico. It had been in the 90’s the week before, but that week and for several after that it was cool and rainy. I don’t recall seeing this bug/beetle with the white stripe before, but I may just not have been looking closely enough. Thanks for all the time you put into educating us.
We are busy with a personal project right now, but we wanted to try to do a quick posting today. We believe this is a Darkling Beetle in the family Tenebrionidae, and it looks similar to some Desert Stink Beetles or Acrobat Beetles in the genus Eleodes. We will try to contact Eric Eaton for assistance.
Udpate: Cactus Longhorn
Right after writing to Eric Eaton, we remembered a Cactus Longhorn and sure enough, we found Moneilema gigas, one of the Cactus Longhorned Beetles on BugGuide. According to the Desert Ecology of Tucson, AZ: “Often seen feeding as adults on cactus stems (frequently prickly pear and chollas). Larvae (grubs with brown heads) feed on both stems and roots. Both adults and grubs may cause severe damage and even death to cactuses.”
Eric Eaton Confirms
This is one of the cactus longhorned beetles that *mimics* Eleodes: Moneilema sp.