Family Carabidae - Ground Beetles
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Coleoptera (Beetles)
Suborder Adephaga (Ground and Water Beetles)
Family Carabidae (Ground Beetles)
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
(tiger beetles) used to be treated as a separate family; some workers treat Rhysodidae
as part of Carabidae.
BG classification follows Bousquet (2012) (1)
by far the largest family of Adephaga and one of the largest insect families with ca. 2,430 spp. (incl. 64 non-native) in almost 200 genera (assigned to 15 subfamilies and 50 tribes) in our area Bousquet (2012) (1)
(~34,000 spp. worldwide, arranged into 23 subfamilies an 110 tribes)
sample local faunas: WI 489 spp.(2)
, GA 531, AL 345, FL 420(3)
, SC 479(4)
, NH ~430(5)
, OK 354(6)
, CA >700(7)
Overview of our fauna: TO BE UPDATED
per Bousquet (2012) (1)
Taxa not yet in the guide: native (*), non-native (+); most names are linked to images available on other sites.
Tribe Bembidiini Amerizus
Tribe Pterostichini Abaris
Subtribe Harpalina Stenomorphus
Tribe Platynini Calathus
Keys to taxa can be found in:
American Beetles (8)
(keys to NA genera)
Ground Beetles and Wrinkled Bark Beetles of South Carolina (4)
(SC, good for southeast fauna as well)
The ground-beetles (Carabidae, excl. Cicindelinae) of Canada and Alaska, parts 1—6 (9)
(focuses more on northern fauna)
Florida ground beetles (3)
(key to genera and species of a few genera in Florida)
Illustrated Identification Guide to Adults and Larvae of Northeastern North American Ground Beetles (10)
The Beetles of Northeastern North America (11)
(older with many errors, but still useful for northeastern fauna)
The Beetles of the Pacific Northwest Pt 1 (12)
Some European sites give a good idea of Holarctic carabid diversity at a glance, e.g.:
Representative galleries of NA species are provided in(13)(3)(14)(10)
Distinguishing carabid from staphylinid larvae
If you have a larva in hand (well, with some magnification, probably), you can tell carabids from staphs because the former have 6-segmented legs and often 2 claws, while staphs have only 5-segmented legs and always only 1 claw. Also, nearly all carabids have the urgomphi solidly attached to segment 9 (no joint at the base), and at least some of the ones that do have them articulated basally have more than 2 segments, which staphs never have. Staphs almost always have the urogomphi articulated and they have only one or two segments; the ones with solid urogomphi are all little guys (including pselaphines) and quite different in form from carabid larvae. (Margaret Thayer, pers. comm. to Jim McClarin; also see Margaret's comment
Most adults rapidly pursue their prey (other insects) at night. A few eat pollen, berries, and seeds. Most larvae are predators, but some are herbivores or parasitoids.
adventive elements of Canadian fauna reviewed in(15)
Darkling Beetles (Tenebrionidae
Other beetles superficially resembling carabids:
|9.||The ground-beetles (Carabidae, excl. Cicindelinae) of Canada and Alaska, parts 1—6|
C.H. Lindroth. 1961. Opuscula Entomologica Supplementa XX, XXIV, XXIX, XXXIII, XXXIV, XXXV.
|11.||The Beetles of Northeastern North America, Vol. 1 and 2.|
Downie, N.M., and R.H. Arnett. 1996. The Sandhill Crane Press, Gainesville, FL.
|12.||The Beetles of the Pacific Northwest|
Hatch, M. 1953. University of Washington publications in biology, Volume 16. University of Washington Press, Seattle, Washington.
|15.||Synopsis of adventive species of Coleoptera (Insecta) recorded from Canada. Part 1: Carabidae|
Klimaszewski J., Langor D., Batista R., Duval J.-A., Majka C.G., Scudder G.G.E., Bousquet Y. 2012. Pensoft Series Faunistica #103, 96 pp.