What Bug Is That? The guide to Australian insect families.

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Cleridae Latreille, 1802


Both larvae and adults of almost all Cleridae prey upon other insects, especially those associated with bark or wood. Adults are very active and usually diurnal, where they are often found on flowers, foliage and tree trunks. Lemidia species are relatively small and brightly coloured, with a narrow prothorax and large, protruding eyes; adults of L. subaenea have been observed feeding on psyllids (HEMI) on the surfaces of Acacia leaves (New 1978), but Lemidia larvae are also the most common clerids in leaf litter. Little is known of the biology of our larger Clerinae, such as Eunatalis titana and Trogodendron fasciculatum , but the latter is important predator of wood-boring Cerambycidae. Zenithicola crassus is a predator in termite nests, and its larva is clothed with very long hairs like those of the termite-feeding elaterid larvae in the genus Pseudotetralobus (Moore 1973). The Thaneroclerinae are usually very small inhabitants of fungal fruiting bodies, but Thaneroclerus buquet occurs in stored products, where it is commonly associated with the anobiid Lasioderma serricorne . Paratillus carus and Tarsostenus univittatus (Tarsosteninae) and Cylidrus species (Tillinae) invade the tunnels of various Bostrichidae and a few scolytine Curculionidae. The introduced Necrobia ruficollis and N. rufipes (Korynetinae) occur in carrion and in stored products of animal origin; the latter, however, is also common in copra cargoes, where it feeds directly on the copra, as well as on other insects. [Aitken 1975; Crowson 1964b; Froggatt 1927; Winkler 1982.]


Elongate, parallel-sided beetles, clothed with erect, or erect and decumbent hairs and often either metallic in colour or patterned with red or yellow. Head usually more or less deflexed; eyes usually slightly to strongly emarginate; antennae short; labial palps often enlarged and securiform; pronotum usually without lateral carinae; prosternum well developed in front of coxae; tarsi with one or more segments lobed or with membranous appendages; 1st tarsal segment sometimes reduced and concealed within tibial apex.

Larvae elongate, cylindrical to somewhat flattened, and lightly sclerotised except for head, one or more tergal plates on thorax and T9 but cuticle often pigmented with yellow, pink, blue or brown. Head well sclerotised dorsally and ventrally; gula long and narrow; mandible with hyaline process at base; except in few Thaneroclerinae, epicranial stem absent and median endocarina present.

  • Phlogistus sp.

  • Opilo sp.

  • Stigmatium bimaculatum