Subject: Black iridescent possum beetlely bug
Geographic location of the bug: Central Michigan
Time: 05:56 PM EDT
My cat found this one. If you mess with it, it plays possum. The pictures don’t do the iridescence justice- it’s a subtle blue.
How you want your letter signed: Curious in MI
Dear Curious in MI,
This is a Blister Beetle in the genus Meloe, commonly called an Oil Beetle. According to BugGuide: “the common name refers to the habit of exuding yellowish oily liquid from the joints when molested” but we have always speculated that Oil Beetle might be a reference to the iridescence you noticed, because it does look like a thin layer of oil on the surface of water.