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

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Australian rhizophagids all appear to be mycophagous, feeding on moulds and other less conspicuous fungi. [Kuschel 1979.]


Elongate, parallel-sided, subcylindrical to flattened beetles, which may be glabrous or clothed with decumbent setae and have truncate elytra exposing pygidium. Except in Shoguna , head abruptly narrowed posteriorly, forming distinct tempora (temples) behind eyes, and pronotum crenulate or dentate laterally.

Larvae elongate, slightly flattened, slightly tapered posteriorly and lightly pigmented above but with tuberculate dorsal surface and sometimes lateral tergal processes on thorax and abdomen. Mala falciform; mandibular prostheca narrow and sometimes serrate; urogomphi weakly developed.


Four genera occur in Australia, including the Asian Monotomopsis , which extends only into Cape York Peninsula. At least two introduced species of Monotoma occur in the more populated areas, where they are common inhabitants of grass piles or compost heaps. Shoguna species from North Qld. are distinctive, subcylindrical, glabrous beetles, which have a long, narrow head and prothorax and may live in the tunnels of ambrosia beetles (Schedl 1962). Species of Mimemodes , which occur in Qld. and northern N.S.W., may have a greatly expanded head in the male.