Glassboro, Gloucester County, New Jersey, USA November 23, 2005 Size: 1 3/8 inches
I was surprised to see this beetle alive (though sluggish) since it is below freezing in this area. I don't recall seeing one like it before, If anyone knows what it might be, please let me know.
I just found out that this dude is a short-winged blister beetle... it exudes a nasty toxin that causes blisters and can kill livestock if eaten. The toxic chemical is called cantharidin - which is a dangerous substance with the same toxicity as the most violent poisons like strychnine.
Geez, what a creature! Good thing he was in a stupor from the cold.
Contributed by Sue Beatrice on 25 November, 2005 - 6:13pm Last updated 5 June, 2009 - 9:59pm
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