Goldsmith Beetle

Subject: Beach Beetle
Location: Plum Island, Massachusetts
June 13, 2016 1:17 pm
Dear Bugman,
We were on a class field trip to the beach and came across this golden guy. Any idea what he (or she) is?
Signature: Curious kids from AMS

Goldsmith Beetle
Goldsmith Beetle

Dear Curious kids from AMS,
Our response is delayed as we were away from the office when you submitted your request.  This is a Goldsmith Beetle,
Cotalpa lanigera, and it appears to have experienced some trauma.  According to BugGuide:  “Adults feed on foliage of oak, poplar, hickory, pear, maple, cottonwood, willow and sweetgum.”   As you are in Massachusetts, you may be interested in knowing that this is allegedly the insect that inspired Edgar Allen Poe’s classic short story “The Gold Bug.”

1 thought on “Goldsmith Beetle”

  1. This solved a mystery for me. I was coming in from outside and saw one of those guys on my back door. Sadly he was gone when I went back out with my phone. Reading that I’m even sadder, a picture of Poe’s gold bug would have been awesome considering I live in Baltimore City


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