Blister Beetle (three photos)
I saw this blister beetle and was kind of surprised to see the "tusks" just
out there hanging in the breeze. Usually they have their heads buried in
a flower. They use this sucking tube to draw nectar from flowers.
More photos below. © Carol Davis 8-3-2016, Antelope Island
This Blister Beetle was on Curlycup Gumweed which is also
called Sticky Buttons. The name becomes self explanatory
once you've touched any part of this plant. How any insect
walks on it without getting stuck is beyond me. This genus of
blister beetles lays eggs on flowers and when the larvae
hatch they attach themselves to visiting bees who in turn take
them back to the nest. Here the larvae eat the bee eggs and
food. Sounds like something out of a horror movie,
doesn't it? Antelope Island, Davis County, Utah © Carol
This is a Nemognatha on Sunflower, which is the
plant of choice for the adult beetle.
There are other smaller
beetles that resemble this one in color that also feed on
Sunflower pollen (see
Carol Davis, 7-29-2009
Thanks to Bugguide.net for information on this beetle.
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