Net Winged Beetle

Subject: Identification of red insect
Location: Alabama
February 6, 2014 1:42 pm
Neighbor found this insect on her patio. What looks like honeycomb is actually a doormat. To me, it looks like a Lepidoptera (moth) but I can’t see enough of the head to make out the antenna form. Also can’t see the wings on the metathorax. I would appreciate any help or suggestions that you can give me. In the meantime, I will continue to research the internet. Thank you.
Signature: Don

Net Winged Beetle
Net Winged Beetle

Thank you for your prompt response. I continued looking and I now believe that it is a Net Winged beetle. If I had been able to see the head, the antennae would have pointed me to the Coleoptera rather than the Lepidoptera.
“Net-winged beetles (family Lycidae), any of some 2,800 species of soft-bodied, brightly coloured, predominately tropical beetles (insect order Coleoptera) whose wing covers, or elytra, are broader at the tip than at the base and are characterized by a raised network of lines, or veins. The adults feed either on plant juices or on other insects and can easily be seen as they fly slowly between plants or crawl on flowers . The bold colouring of orange and black or blue probably warns predators of their acidic, burning taste. Larvae feed on wet rotting wood and are often found in high numbers.”

Hi Don,
We apologize for the delay.  For some reason, there was a glitch in our email delivery and submissions were being delayed several days.  We agree that this is a Net Winged Beetle in the genus
Dictyoptera, and it is most likely the Golden Net Wing, Dictyoptera aurora.  Of the four species listed on BugGuide, only two are reported from Alabama, including the Golden Net Winged Beetle.  The other, Dictyoptera munda, is represented by a single mounted specimen on BugGuide, but the thorax lacks the dark markings.

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