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For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada
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Species Alobates pensylvanica - False Mealworm Beetle

Darkling Beetle? - Alobates pensylvanica False Mealworm Beetle - Alobates pensylvanica Darkling beetle - Alobates pensylvanica False Mealworm Beetle - Alobates pensylvanica False Mealworm Beetle - Alobates pensylvanica Darkling Beetle - Alobates pensylvanica Beetle found in firewood - Alobates pensylvanica False Mealworm Beetle - Alobates pensylvanica
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Coleoptera (Beetles)
Suborder Polyphaga (Water, Rove, Scarab, Long-horned, Leaf and Snout Beetles)
No Taxon (Series Cucujiformia)
Superfamily Tenebrionoidea (Fungus, Bark, Darkling and Blister Beetles)
Family Tenebrionidae (Darkling Beetles)
Subfamily Stenochiinae
Tribe Cnodalonini
Genus Alobates
Species pensylvanica (False Mealworm Beetle)
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Alobates pensylvanica (De Geer, 1775)
Originally Tenebrio pensylvanicus
Often written Alobates pennsylvanica, but the variant with one "n" was sometimes seen in Latin names at the time and does not represent an error; it stands as the correct species name
Alobates pensylvanicus or Alobates pennsylvanicus (retaining the original gender)
20-23 mm
Elongate, large darkling beetle. Pronotum almost square. Elytra shining with rows of fine punctures (5 or more on each elytra?). Alobates morio is very similar, but rarer, has a tuft of yellow hair on "mentum"--mouthparts. (1)
Forested areas of North America
Found under decaying bark in forests
All year. Comes to lights in summer.
Both adults and larvae predatory on other insects.
Life Cycle
One year life cycle. Found under bark. Larvae live in decaying logs and is predatory on other insects.
Print References
Arnett, et al., p. 267, describes two members of genus (1)
Arnett, p. 468, fig. 24.160--illustration may be mislabeled (2)
Arnett and Jacques, #147 (3)
Brimley, p. 192 (4)
Dillon, p. 473, plate 46 (5)
Salsbury, p. 211--photo (6)
Taber, p. 116, fig. 99--photo (7)
White, pp. 254-255 (8)
Internet References
Alobates pennsylvanica--Insects of Cedar Creek -- original description (De Geer 1775), in French
Works Cited
1.How to Know the Beetles
Ross H. Arnett, N. M. Downie, H. E. Jaques. 1980. Wm. C. Brown Publishers.
2.American Insects: A Handbook of the Insects of America North of Mexico
Ross H. Arnett. 2000. CRC Press.
3.Simon & Schuster's Guide to Insects
Dr. Ross H. Arnett, Dr. Richard L. Jacques. 1981. Fireside.
4.Insects of North Carolina
C.S. Brimley. 1938. North Carolina Department of Agriculture.
5.A Manual of Common Beetles of Eastern North America
Dillon, Elizabeth S., and Dillon, Lawrence. 1961. Row, Peterson, and Company.
6.Insects in Kansas
Glenn A. Salsbury and Stephan C. White. 2000. Kansas Dept. of Agriculture.
7.Insects of the Texas Lost Pines (W.L. Moody, Jr., Natural History Series, No. 33)
Stephen W. Taber, Scott B. Fleenor. 2003. M University Press.
8.Peterson Field Guides: Beetles
Richard E. White. 1983. Houghton Mifflin Company.