California Prionus

What’s this bug?
Hi there!
The only posts I found on this cool site were from 2004 and 2003 – are you guys still identifying bugs? I found one tonight while on a walk with my dog. It was on the cement under a bright light, and it never walked anywhere (though its body was moving while I was taking photographs). I photoshopped the phone closer to the beetle than I was willing to actually put it myself… can this be a California Prionus? What do they eat, and are they beneficial or harmful?
Mountain View , CA

Hi there Mountain View,
This is very exciting. We have never had an entire town write to us. We agree that this is a female California Prionus. The larvae eat live, dying and decomposing wood from trees, shrubs and woody vines. The grubs can be injurious to trees, including fruit trees. We cannot locate any information on adult food preferences.

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