Ship Timber Beetle from South Africa

Subject:  Curious bugs
Geographic location of the bug:  South Africa, Kwa-Zulu Natal, Asbhurton
Date: 10/09/2018
Time: 01:55 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Hi there. We have lived in Ashburton for almost two years and in that time have only ever seen one of the two bugs. We have never seen them before in our lives and no one knows what they are. They are both about 5-6cm in length and both have hard exterior. there are two pictures of the one and one of the other.
Do you know what they are?
How you want your letter signed:  Amy Peacock

Ship Timber Beetle

Dear Amy,
One of your beetles is a Ship Timber Beetle.  According to Beetles in the Bush:  “Placed in the family Lymexylidae (ship-timber beetles), species in this genus look less like beetles than they do large flying ants or strange damselflies due to their highly reduced elytra that expose their greatly elongated abdomen and leave the hind wings uncovered.  The hind wings also are unusual in that they are held fan-like in repose rather than folded as in most other beetles. 
Atractocerus brevicornis is the only species in the genus found in Africa (Scholtz & Holm 1985).” Your other beetle is a Longicorn in the family Cerambycidae.

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BugMan aka Daniel Marlos has been identifying bugs since 1999. WhatsThatbug.com is his passion project and it has helped millions of readers identify the bug that has been bugging them for over two decades. You can reach out to him through our Contact Page.

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