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Beetle  Soldier Beetles

Soldier Beetle - Photo  Copyright 2007 Gary Bradley
Photo: G. Bradley

UK Safari Tip:
Need help identifying beetles and bugs? Try this superbly illustrated fold out ID chart - click here

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Latin name:
Rhagonycha fulva

Size: Approximately 10mm long.

Found throughout the UK. Common.

Months seen: March to October.

Habitat: Grassland, wasteground, gardens and woodland edges.

Food: Small soft-bodied insects.

Special features: This is one of several similar looking beetles which go under the general name of Soldier Beetles or Sailor Beetles.

Soldier beetles have narrow bodies and long antennae. This particular species has brown wing casings with black tips.

Click for a better viewThey are often seen in large numbers in June and July on flower heads of cow parsley and hogweed. It's quite rare to see them singly. More often they are seen as mating pairs, earning them the nickname of 'bonking beetles'.

Their brown, maggot-like larvae live in soil and leaf litter. They feed on springtails and other tiny insects.

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UK Safari Beetle Section

  2006 G. Bradley. All Rights Reserved