Carrion Beetle Larva eats snail in Bulgaria

larva eats snail
July 2, 2010
Today I made new photos of this insect
I hope to help you identify it
Best Regards

Carrion Beetle Larva eats Snail

Hi again Dean,
Thanks for the better view of this larva’s head.  One of our readers, Mardikavana, identified the larva from your previous letter as the larva of a Silphid Beetle or Carrion Beetle.  Mardikavana wrote in a comment:  “
My best guess is that it is some kind of Silphidae larvae (definitely not Nicrophorus sp.) Well that’s the first family that comes to my mind:) and then later: “For example Ablattaria species larvae prey on snails. I think that Silpha atrata larvae should do the same but I couldn’t get any information about their food preferences.”

Carrion Beetle Larva eats Snail

Update from Dean
July 10, 2010
I continued my investigation on behalf of insect larvae that eat snails ……… and Bingoooo I think that I found the answer to the riddle. Insect that I shot it’s a larva of Phosphuga atrata (Family Silphidae), know under name Carrion Beetle,
This insect is not American Carrion Beetle, as your reader suggested.
Apparently American Carrion Beetle is a close relative of Carrion Beetle, which is found in Bulgaria
My assumptions are based on the fact that I have seen similar beetle Carrion Beetle, American Carrion Beetle but obviously not found in Bulgaria
See the next link –
Links of images –
Links of Web –

Update from Dean
July 10, 2010
Hi again 🙂
I found information that the larvae and the beetles of Phosphuga atrata (Family Silphidae), also known by the name European Carrion Beetle, eat snails
See next URL –
and this pic
P.S. Almost one month I read info for this insect and still I’m interested, especially when I find new details 🙂

Thanks for the updates Dean.

Photo of author


BugMan aka Daniel Marlos has been identifying bugs since 1999. is his passion project and it has helped millions of readers identify the bug that has been bugging them for over two decades. You can reach out to him through our Contact Page.

3 thoughts on “Carrion Beetle Larva eats snail in Bulgaria”

  1. The prey here looks as if it might be a juvenile of the land snail Theba pisana, which has been introduced to many areas worldwide. I can’t be sure though, as I can’t see all of the shell, plus juveniles look different from adults in many land snail species.


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