Beetles are insects with specialized forward wings and an extremely hard and durable outer covering. They are among the most numerous creatures in the world.
They can be found in many parts of the world. There are many beautiful and colorful beetles while many are remarkably unique and peculiar.
Here are some of the most interesting and amazing facts about Beetles.
1. The word beetle is derived from “bitan”, an Anglo-Saxon word which means “to bite”.
2. Beetles live in all parts of the world except in the Polar Regions and in salt water. They eat different kinds of animal and vegetables.
3. There are most species of Beetles than of any other kind of insect. There about 300,000 in all with over 30,000 species live in North America.
4. Many Beetles are incorrectly called Bugs. Beetles and Bugs are two distinct insects. The Bug’s outer wings have gauzy tips that overlap at the back while the Beetle’s outer wings are heavy and horny.
5. Not all Beetles can fly. Some are good fliers while some are poor fliers. Those who can’t fly are swift runners.
6. Beetles have strong mouths adapted to biting while Bugs have sucking beaks.
7. The Beetle’s jaw is multi-purpose. It can be used for grasping and killing prey. It can be used fro gnawing, chewing and boring.
8. Beetles have 3 pairs of legs. Some Beetle species have legs suited for swimming and digging while some have long slender legs adapted for running such as the Tiger Beetle.
9. The largest Beetle in the world is the Goliath Beetle. It is also the largest insect in the world and can attain a weight of up to 900 grams. It is a scarab endemic to Africa.
10. The most destructive beetle species include the Carpet Beetle, May Beetle, Japanese Beetle, Rose Bug, Potato Bug, Sugar Cane Beetle, Mexican Bean Beetle and Weevils.
11. One of the most beneficial beetle species is the Lady Bug or Lady Bird. It destroys plant lice and other insects harmful to plants.
12. Some beetle species require 5 years to complete their metamorphosis while some species produce several generations annually.
13. Carrion Beetles are amazing species. They bury the entire carcass of a mouse or a bird in a few hours. The female will then lay eggs in a tunnel leading to the dead body. Both young and adults feed on the carcass.
14. Bark beetles are destructive species. They damage timber trees and carry the disease that causes Dutch Elm Diseases.
15. A beetle species than can cause a painful blister in human skin is the Blister Beetle. It is usually found on crop and garden plants.
16. Some beetle species are also covered with hairs such as the Checkered Beetle. They feed on the larvae of the Bark Beetles.
17. A beetle species that is absolutely unique among other species is the Diving Beetle. It can breathe under water.
18. Other large beetle species aside from the Goliath Beetle are The Rhinoceros Beetle and Ox Beetle which can reach a length of 5 centimeter.