Fig Tree Borer from South Africa: Phryneta spinator

Subject: ??Beetle in South Africa
Location: South Africa
March 20, 2013 11:04 am
Dear Bugman,
I am a missionary in Knysna, South Africa and LOVE taking pictures. Lately I have been focusing on finding interesting creepy crawlies. We are at the end of summer and this beetle (if it is that) was found outside the hotel where we meet for services. I have NO idea what it is. Do you??
Signature: Scared, but faking braveness for the photo, Amy

Longhorned Borer Beetle
Fig Tree Borer

Hi Amy,
This is a Longhorned Borer Beetle in the family Cerambycidae.  Members of the family are also known as Longicorns, Capricorns or Bycids.  We will try to determine the species for you.  Though they are not dangerous, large individuals should be handled with caution as they have very powerful mandibles that are used to chew their way out of the wood they bored in as larvae.  It is conceivable that a bite might draw blood and be painful.

Update:  December 29, 2013
We just recieved a comment indicating that this is a Fig Tree Borer,
Phryneta spinator, and we found a matching photo on BioDiversity Explorer.

1 thought on “Fig Tree Borer from South Africa: Phryneta spinator”

  1. This appears to be a fig tree borer, Phryneta spinator. They are reaching pest status in areas where figs are cultivated in SA. Johan.


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