Downy Leather-winged Beetle
( Podabrus pruinosus )


2004-0323-01100137-COL00482-Podabrus_pruinosus[1219h40s,F,A,plant-leaf]{EXD}-G.jpg

PHOTO COMMENT

IDENTIFICATION
Identification:Podabrus pruinosus
(LeConte ,1851 )
Common Name:Downy Leather-winged Beetle
Life Stage:(A) adult

PHYLOGENY

Phylum:Arthropoda
Class:Insecta
Superorder:Holometabola
Order:Coleoptera
Suborder:Polyphaga
Family:Cantharidae
Subfamily:Cantharinae
Tribe:Podabrini
Genus:Podabrus
Taxon Code:COL00482
ITIS/TSN:834408

LOCATION DETAILS
Location Name
Oakland, Oakland, 4830 Lawton Ave., Oakland
County:Alameda County
ECI Site#:CA01100137

RECOGNITION
Description
These beetles are good flyers and pretty common. They have soft elytra (wing covers) and legs. Their overall shape is rectangular. The head, thorax and legs are orange to red orange. The elytra are dark grey and covered with shiny hairs. These beetles exude a dark liquid from their mouths when disturbed. The family name “Cantharidae” is named after the dark liquid (cantharis). It is an irritant to the eyes many animals. These beetles are voracious predators of aphids and other arthropods on plants.
Body Length
9-15 mm.

BIOLOGY
When disturbed the beetles drop to the ground.
Food
The beetle locates aphids by sight. Prey is seized by the mandibles. Only the juices are ingested and the exoskeleton is discarded within a couple of minutes.
Range
Known from California, Oregon, Washington, Arizona, Montana, British Columbia and Alberta.
Active Period
This beetle was found to be very abundant and important in the control of all forms of plant lice. Adults appeared at the beginning of May, becoming most abundant in June. However, by July only a few individuals could be found. During warm June weather the beetles were flying everywhere.

CREDITS
Photographer
Eddie Dunbar
Insect Sciences Museum of California

References
Species Podabrus pruinosus. (bugguide.net/node/view/9449). Accessed January 15, 2017. .
ITIS.
The Feeding of Podabrus pruinosus LeConte (Cantharidae). J. W. Tilden. The Coleopterists Bulletin. Vol. 4, No. 6 (Dec., 1950), p. 92.


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