Firefly Larva or Net-Winged Beetle Larva???

Subject: Strange bug
Location: Southern Kentucky
February 24, 2014 4:39 pm
We found this bug on our deck in southern Kentucky. I have never seen anything like it. It’s body was hard and had spikes on it but the head was snail/caterpillar like and could stretch out really far.When touched, it pulled it’s head in and played dead.
Signature: Stumped

Firefly or Netwinged Beetle Larva
Firefly or Net-Winged Beetle Larva

Dear Stumped,
This is either the larva of a Firefly (see BugGuide) or the larva of a Net-Winged Beetle (see BugGuide).  If it eats snails, according to Eric Eaton, it is a Firefly Larva, and if it eats fungus, it is a Net-Winged Beetle Larva.

1 thought on “Firefly Larva or Net-Winged Beetle Larva???”

  1. I found the same bug today in north New Jersey on the side of my house it has a whitish stripe underneath and semi curls up while pulling its head when it gets scared. The end of it moves like a caterpillar and yet the rest of the body moves like a regular insect. Right now it’s in the seventies temperature beginning of spring found on March 11,2016.


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