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

Subject:  Beetle South Africa?
Geographic location of the bug:  Durban, South Africa
Date: 01/13/2018
Time: 02:28 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Dear bug people
It is mid summer here in Durban, South Africa and this little guy just landed on my patio. I am always keen to identify the creatures in my garden, from bugs to birds.
Hope to hear from you.
Many thanks.
How you want your letter signed:  Kevin C

Flower Chafer

Dear Kevin,
This is a Scarab Beetle in the family Scarabaeidae, and we believe it is in the subfamily Cetoniinae, the Fruit and Flower Chafers, however we could not find a matching image on Beetles of Africa or on iSpot.  Perhaps one of our readers will have better luck than we have had.

Update:  Thanks to a comment from Cesar Crash, we believe this is a Flower Chafer, Porphyronota maculatissima, which is pictured on Flower Beetles and on BeetleSpace.

Thank you. Much appreciated for your time and feedback.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Large Scarab with Extremely Long Legs
Geographic location of the bug:  South Mississippi
Date: 01/07/2018
Time: 09:15 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Hi bugman, I am an environmental biology student with a love for all things nature. I’m usually pretty good at identifying animals and insects but this one has stumped me. I found it on a box turtle carcas in a pitcher plant bog/ wetland area. I’m pretty sure it is in the scarab group, but it has acceptionally long legs. The 3rd set are about 1.25 inches long, and the 2nd set are about 1 inch long. I have yet to see it poke its head out but it has 4 little spikes near its mouth.  If you can help me identify this beetle I would really appreciate it! Thank you for your time!
How you want your letter signed:  Jaden

Humpbacked Dung Beetle

Dear Jaden,
We quickly identified your Scarab Beetle as a Humpbacked Dung Beetle,
Deltochilum gibbosum, thanks to this BugGuide image.  According to BugGuide:  “Large, round, dull black beetle. Male has a prominent hump on each elytron. Front tarsi absent. Clypeus has two sets of teeth, the inner ones pointy, the outer rounded (hard to see in photos)” and the habitat is “wooded places; on carrion, dung, rotting fruit, fungi.”   According to Encyclopedia of Life:  “Found in woodlands from Virginia south to Florida and as far west as Texas and Illinois. Also occurs in Mexico.”

Humpbacked Dung Beetle

Dear Bugman,
This is Jaden just emailing you to thank you for identifying my humpback dung beetle! He was very interesting to come into contact with and snap a few pictures of! I appreciate your time and effort! Keep up the good work!
Thank you again,

Humpbacked Dung Beetle

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Can you please help me identify this beetle.?
Geographic location of the bug:  Perth, Western Australia.
Date: 01/02/2018
Time: 09:17 PM EDT
Hello, I found this beetle in my ensuite but I’m having trouble identifying it. I found The spotted rose beetle but I can’t see that there in Australia. I was hoping you could help me identify him. As I’m not sure whether to let him go or where to put him.
How you want your letter signed:  Regards, Narida Doherty.

Brown Flower Beetle

Dear Narida,
We quickly identified this Scarab Beetle as a Brown Flower Beetle,
Glycyphana stolata, thanks the the Brisbane Insect site where it states:  “The Brown Flower Beetle usually found feeding nectar on gum tree flowers. This beetle can be found feeding nectar on various native plants during summer.”  The species is also pictured on the Atlas of Living Australia and Oz Animals.

Thank you so much Daniel, that’s exactly what it is!

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Mystery Grub
Geographic location of the bug:  Orange County, CA
Date: 12/02/2017
Time: 12:49 AM EDT
Hello.  I moved a tent in my backyard and found many of these grubs.  One of the ones was much bigger than the others.  You can see it in the photo compared to my thumb.
How you want your letter signed:  Michael

Scarab Beetle Grubs

Dear Michael,
These are Scarab Beetle Grubs.  Many species feed on the roots of grasses.  Others are found in or near decaying vegetation, including in compost piles and rotted logs.  We are postdating your submission to go live near the end of the month when our editorial staff is on holiday.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Holiday Cotinis!
Geographic location of the bug:  CA
Date: 12/09/2017
Time: 03:57 PM EDT
Hello bugman,
I understand that you have stated that comments should be submitted via the Comment Form. However,  since it does not have any way to attach images, I will be using this one. I apologize in advance if necessary.
The closely-related green fruit scarabs Cotinis mutabilis and C. nitida (they are NOT June beetles, despite the name “green June beetle”) often inspire great hatred and fear in the ignorant, due to their enormous size and “pest” status. However, many of the accusations are actually quite irrational. For the sake of brevity, I will only say that a few “cute” birds and squirrels are probably much more efficient fruit-eaters than a gardenful of Cotinis. They can probably be stopped easily with plastic bags tied around fruit, anyways.
The attached files are of my captive Cotinis mutabilis scarab. I found it in the swimming pool on the last day of July, and since its wings were damaged and useless it probably could not survive outdoors. Even though wild specimens always vanish by the end of September, this one refuses to kick the bucket. Cushy captive conditions have likely prolonged its life, but it is becoming slightly senile.
Like other members of its species, it is naturally quite tame and will allow itself to be hand-fed without any training. Unfortunately, it is not a very interesting “pet”.  Like other members of its species, it will also enter an hours-long “food coma” when feeding on fruit. This can often last half a day, but when it is not busy feeding it is either trying to escape/fly (bugsincyberspace has informed me that this is not a sign of improper husbandry) or sleeping. This alone wouldn’t be too bad, but every few days its waste products stink up the jar and I have to perform maintenance.
However, a number of amusing incidents have occurred.
– Back when I had two rescued C. mutabilis males, they would take turns trying to inseminate each other. According to research articles online, this is actually a very common behavior in many insect species. Presumably, it is better to waste sperm than miss an opportunity! ( I know they were not females, since females do not actively seek out males.)
-It will also attempt to mate with non-beetles. If I handle it for too long, it will attempt to mate with my finger! Picture 2 shows the beetle trying to mate with its food dish. This is not an act of defecation, which looks very different. Perhaps the hard metallicity of the dish felt like another beetle.
However, I will warn readers that C. mutabilis and its close relative C. nitida are probably not well-suited to captivity. My captive specimen repeatedly attempts to fly despite its ruined wings, and wild individuals fly great distances and perform acrobatic feats in the air. Although I am not certain, keeping a non-flightless individual in captivity would likely cause it unnecessary distress. Even free-ranging one in the house does not work, as they always fly to a window and bang their heads against it constantly.
How you want your letter signed:  AlexW, extreme entomophile


Dear AlexW, extreme entomophile,
Thanks for your lengthy account of your captive Figeaters.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Bug in garden.
Geographic location of the bug:  Gippsland Victoria
Date: 11/20/2017
Time: 10:01 PM EDT
Im trying to find out what bug this is. And is it a good bug or bad bug?
How you want your letter signed:  Anyway.

Fiddler Beetle

Each year as summer approaches in the southern hemisphere, we receive identification requests for Fiddler Beetles, like the one in your image, from Australia.  When it comes to insects, good and bad are relative terms.  Fiddler Beetles pose no threat to humans.  According to Australian Museum:  “Adult beetles emerge from soil in early summer and feed on the nectar of flowers” and “Female Fiddler Beetles lay their eggs in rotting logs or in the damp soil under logs. The grubs feed on rotting timber and build cocoons of soil and debris in which they pupate.”  As pollinating insects with larvae that help break down rotting wood, we feel confident stating they are beneficial in the garden.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination