Organism of the month June 2009 – mystery beetle

Mystery beetle on my thumb (click to enlarge)

Mystery beetle on my thumb (click to enlarge)

I see lots of mystery beetles. Sometimes they are not a mystery for long, but this one isn’t in my books at all. But it’s such a cool little creature that it should be!

Can you tell me what this is, anyone?

The camouflage is brilliant. Cryptic, textured and it’s back end seems to mimick a head, or perhaps a broken twig. The jaws are hefty, but I suspect it’s not a carnivore. At the start of this close-up video clip you’ll notice its movement looks rather clockwork – that’s real, not a camera effect!

Jason Ball @ Natureheads.com
http://wp.me/p2a88-ed

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One Response to “Organism of the month June 2009 – mystery beetle”

  1. natureheads Says:

    Got a fast answer from the Bug Forum on the Natural History Museum website http://www.nhm.ac.uk
    ===================
    Berks, UK.
    I photographed a very odd beetle, end of May 2009.
    Cryptic camouflage, but mainly black. Reminds me of a weevil in overall shape, but not like any I’ve seen before. V sturdy.
    That’s the front, by the way!

    This beetle has a ‘mask’ on its head, as you can see. It’s sat on my thumb, so you get an idea of scale. Perhaps 10mm – 15mm long approx, but I didn’t measure it.

    On the video you get a much better idea of what it’s like, and there is a glimpse of it’s curiously patterned back end.
    ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=japostdIY2U )

    posted by Natureheads 26 June, 2009
    ===================

    primitive weevil, Platyrhinus resinosus

    posted by oxycera 27 June, 2009
    ===================

    Thanks Oxycera! That was quick.

    ===================

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