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

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Haliplids are found among aquatic vegetation at the edges of ponds, lakes or slow-moving streams; adults usually crawl along the bottom, but they are able to swim using alternate leg movements. Adult and larval haliplids commonly feed on stoneworts (Charophyceae) and some other kinds of green algae.


Small, convex, boat-shaped beetles with large hind coxal plates, concealing basal abdominal ventrites and hind femora. Scutellum absent; elytra strongly, seriately punctate; swimming hairs present on tibiae and tarsi. Larvae elongate and narrow, with 10 well-developed abdominal segments, the last of which forms long, narrow process. Mandibles short, stout and perforate, and in known Australian species thoracic terga and T1 to T9 each have 2 pairs of posteriorly projecting, spine-like processes. Spiracles lacking, except in final instar, and respiration takes place through microtracheal gills (Seeger 1971).


The family occurs on all continents and Madagascar and is represented in Australia by Haliplus . [Watts 1988a.]