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

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Latridiidae Erichson, 1842

Overview

Adults and larvae feed on the spores of a variety of fungi and are commonly taken from dead vegetation and leaf litter. Some Enicmus are found in the fruiting bodies of slime moulds (Myxomycetes), while other lathridiids specialise on moulds or other ascomycetous fungi. Cortinicara hirtalis is often beaten from foliage.

Description

Minute beetles with pronotum usually much narrower than elytral bases, elytral punctures more or less seriate, clypeus laterally expanded in front of antennal insertions, and antennal scape usually large and more or less globular. Lathridiinae subglabrous with median groove on frons, separated fore coxae, and usually carinae on pronotum or elytra and waxy exudate covering various portions of body; Corticariinae usually setose with contiguous fore coxae and no carinae or waxy exudate.

Larvae elongate, tapered posteriorly, and lightly sclerotised except for head, with vestiture of long, fine setae or occasionally shorter, frayed setae. Antennae relatively long; mandibles often partly membranous; mala obtuse.

Distribution

Several Australian species, such as Lathridius minutus , Cartodere constricta , Dienerella spp., Adistemia watsoni , Corticaria japonica , C. elongata and C. ferruginea , have been introduced in ballast or mouldy food stores, while others, like Aridius nodifer , A. bifasciatus , and A. australicus , are probably endemic taxa which have been widely introduced to other parts of the world. [Aitken 1975; Hinton 1945a; Johnson 1975; Watt 1969.]

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