Currently viewing the category: "Rove Beetles"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Strange Flyer Dances into my Curiosity
Geographic location of the bug:  Gloucester, Va
Date: 08/14/2019
Time: 07:03 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  This odd creature flew into my phone, bounced off & landed in front of me. It then proceeds to waggle it’s purplish wings & tasseled abdomen at me before retracting it’s wings (somewhere!) Only to produce them once again & promptly take off. It’s a hot and steamy August here in Virginia. I’ve been a keen observer of nature all of my life & can honestly say, this one has stumped me completely. Hope you guys can help me out!
How you want your letter signed:  Thanks a bunch! Holly G

Rove Beetle

Dear Holly,
You have good reason for being stumped.  This is a Rove Beetle in the family Staphylinidae, and many members of the family look very different from the “typical” beetle.  Unfortunately, BugGuide is currently experiencing technical difficulty and we cannot search for the species, but luckily, we were able to identify it as 
Platydracus maculosus in Beetles of Eastern North America by Arthur V. Evans where it states it is:  “the largest rove beetle in North America.”  The image with its abdomen curled up is a typical threat posture for many Rove Beetles.

Rove Beetle

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Strange bug in my pool
Geographic location of the bug:  Ontario, Canada
Date: 09/07/2018
Time: 10:28 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Hi, I found a very odd bug in my pool and I’ve never seen one like it before. Could you tell me what it is?
How you want your letter signed:  Crystal

Rove Beetle

Dear Crystal,
Based on this BugGuide image, we believe we have correctly identified your Rove Beetle as
Platydracus immaculatus.  Rove Beetles are not aquatic.  We believe this individual fell into the pool.  According to BugGuide:  “now infrequently collected over much of its range.” 

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Beetle identification
Geographic location of the bug:  Perth- western australia
Date: 09/01/2018
Time: 02:56 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Bug was found in lawn when removing african beetles.
Is over 6mm in length.
Wondering what the beetle is and if it is destructive to plants or harmful to pets
How you want your letter signed:  Regards, Daniel Jones

Devil’s Coach Horse

Dear Daniel,
Because of its red head, this is an amazing looking Rove Beetle in the family Staphylinidae, and we identified it as
Creophilus erythrocephalus, commonly called a Devil’s Coach Horse, thanks to images on Wild South Australia.  According to Museums Victoria:  “Devil’s Coach Horses eat maggots (fly larvae) and are usually found living in rotting animal carcasses.”  While that might seem unsavory, we would consider them beneficial as they help to control Fly populations.  The species is also pictured on Atlas of Living Australia.  The common name Devil’s Coach Horse is also used with a European species of Rove Beetle that has naturalized in North America.  This Devil’s Coach Horse does not look like it died of natural causes, so we are tagging this posting as Unnecessary Carnage.

Devil’s Coach Horse

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Bug identity
Geographic location of the bug:  West Tennessee
Date: 06/26/2018
Time: 03:25 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  We are finding many of these bugs in cat litter boxes at the cat rescue center where I volunteer.  They are small,  skinny and maybe 1/4 inch long.
Thank you.
How you want your letter signed:  Christine Morrison

Rove Beetle, we believe

Dear Christine,
We wish the quality of your image was better.  Though it somewhat resembles an Earwig, we believe, based on this BugGuide image, that this is a Rove Beetle, but the species is not identified.  Regarding finding them in proximity of litter boxes, BugGuide indicates:  “Often found under rocks, logs, etc. Some found on edges of bodies of water, others on carrion, decaying fungi, etc” and “Most adults and larvae are predatory on other invertebrates. Some larvae feed on decaying vegetation.”

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Gnarly bug
Geographic location of the bug:  Kent, Great Britain
Date: 09/30/2017
Time: 05:37 PM EDT
Hi,
Found this bug in my bathroom a few days ago, is roughly 2-2.5inches long. Found a second, smaller one in kids bedroom this evening.
Brick built house, roughly 7years old. Just coming into autumn here in UK and weather has been approx. 15-20C the past week.
Hope that helps
How you want your letter signed:  Many thanks  Ken

Devil’s Coach Horse

Dear Ken,
This is a predatory Rove Beetle that is commonly called a Devil’s Coach Horse.  According to Nature Spot:  “This beetle is found in damp conditions in most natural environments including: woodland, hedgerows, parks and gardens, where it relies on decaying natural matter.”  According to the Royal Horticultural Society:  “Two beetle families are largely ground dwelling and predatory and should be considered  gardener’s friends: ground beetles (Carabidae) and rove beetles (Staphylindae). …  The matt black devil’s coach horse (
Ocypus olens) is Britain’s largest rove beetle and is often found in gardens under logs or pots.”  Thank you for providing images of both the threat posture and the more relaxed position.  When threatened, the Devil’s Coach Horse will curve its abdomen over its head like a scorpion, but instead of stinging, it releases a foul odor.

Devil’s Coach Horse

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What bug is this?
Location: Boulder Colorado
August 6, 2017 1:56 pm
It does not have pinchers. Not an earwig and the legs are not long enough to be a nymph assassin bug. It was outside and not a threat to me but I’m just really curious what it is.
Signature: Michelle

Rove Beetle

Dear Michelle,
WE believe, based on this BugGuide image, that your Rove Beetle is
Platydracus immaculatusBugGuide states its habitat is “open habitats, esp. stony areas with sandy soil” and that it is “now infrequently collected over much of its range.”  This Rove Beetle poses no threat to you.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination