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Previous events

Rain Beetle Season 2014-2015

Another Rain beetle season is approaching here in northern California. We’ve had one good rain here in the foothills above Chico, but no beetles so far. They’ll probably show up during the next soaking rain, although with the on-going drought, who knows what will happen.

As I’ve mentioned before, BugGuide is only missing photos of a couple of the described species.

Now, the only species missing are is:
P. crinita Linsley -- northern OR/southern WA
P. hoppingi Fall -- Sierra Nevada Mts ranging from east of Sacramento to south of Fresno; this species seems to be one of the spring/snow melt emergers

As always, this thread is for people to report their encounters with rain beetles. Rain beetles can be caught at lights (black lights, mercury vapor, you name it). They can be found floating in puddles or ponds. I was given specimens a couple years ago that were caught in a dog’s water bowl that had been left out overnight. If you live where the rain beetles live, as I do, all you have to do is turn the lights on in your home and open the door before dawn on a rainy morning. The beetles will fly right into your house!

There hasn’t been much activity in these threads, but I’ve received enough responses off-line, that I thought I would run the thread for another season.

Happy beetling!

Tahoe Pleocoma males First Sighting
At first lite January 25, 2015 and February 9 , 2015 I witnessed Male Pleocoma flying over head at my house in South Lake Tahoe , California . I have put out traps... nothing yet... maybe this January 2016 . In my opinion they are Pleocoma hoppingi as I have gotten them off Omo Ranch Road andI have heard of possible hoppingi Higher above Placerville as well. Cheers ! Gene St. Denis Sierra Nevada Research

Pleocoma hoppingi - Omo Ranch RD
I forgot to add this. On Feb. 8th 2015 I had left out 2 remote traps off Omo Ranch Road and collected 6 Pleocoma hoppingi males . I believe this is in El Dorado County , U.S.A. Cheers ! Gene St. Denis Sierra Nevada Research

P. australis and P. puncticollis observed in the Cuyamacas today

Two species: same site, same day
Very nice! Getting two species at the same site and on the same day doesn't seem to happen all that often. John Dittes and I have been monitoring a few such localities here in the northern part of the state. Thanks for sharing. By the way, this is the thread from a couple years back. If you'd like to follow the action for this year, here is the new thread:

Rain Beetle today (11/20/15) in Paradise
Hello! I live in Paradise and this morning had a male rain beetle fly (not very well) into the shower. I have never seen anything like him before! After much searching on the internet, I was able to finally figure out what this "huge, alien looking bug" was! What a shock, and gosh he scared the beegeezers out of me when he flew in the window and straight into me before landing in the bathtub.

Paradise, CA?
Would that be Paradise, California? If so, welcome to BugGuide, neighbor. I live "just a bit above Paradise" as the saying goes. The rain beetles have been emerging since about 11/3/2015 up on the Ridge. The species you likely saw is Pleocoma staff: If you'd like to follow this year's discussion on rain beetles, check out the link here:

Pleocoma transierra
Some specimens seen / reported flying around Bishop . Will see and report any findings . Additional Notes ...The last couple of Pleocoma hoppingi I collected at the end of Jan. 2015 and early Feb. 2015 ...died last week, that is 3 months folks . gst

Pleocoma hoppingi-4 additional Notes+Observations
Feb. 6 thru 8th 2015 I Went back down to Hwy 108 for some more Pleocoma hoppingi and I was not disappointed. Using black lite traps collected 15 more total males in the early morning hours of 5:55 am to 6:15 am . Warmer temps for thawed ground required. Freezing temps and they stay home. At first I could not believe it , However I saw Female Deer ( several) running into and then Stomping on Flying Pleocoma hoppingi Males . They then Ate them. I found an Elytra and leg floating in puddles the Deer were splashing in. At first I thought that they were some college deer drinking and dancing . I had seen this before 40 years ago and I had dismissed it as " I was imagining it " , as deer are veggies. A F. S. worker called me and reported that the males are still percolating out of the ground in the Mornings of Yesterday 2 hit his wind shield in the morning as he was going to get some eggs on 108 . I have 4 males still alive from January and 5 still alive from Feb.6-8th trip as well . I let them buzz about the house every few days for exercise . The Cat is very Impressed. gst P. S. I am re Adding these pictures for Hard Data ...

You don't generate any hard data
by posting to the forums. The only way to generate hard data on this website is to post images to ID Request or to the hoppingi page itself. The only hard data you have posted are the seven images of hoppingi males from Jan 25. Click on "Your images" at the upper right of your screen and you will see the only hard data you have posted. Forums are for words. The guide is for images that create hard data.

You have it then . No more posts for you .

Narratives appreciated
Your narratives regarding rain beetle observations are indeed appreciated. There is more to BG than "hard data". Expanding on the natural histories of the subjects (BG's underlying mission) can include such discussion in the Remarks section of image posts. That's where folks interested in rain beetles will look for it. Consider my image sequences on NM pinyon scale and Mite on ant as templates.

You should go on posting
You have a nice group of folks here interested in what you are finding on Rain Beetles. Don't deprive them of your finds.

We were only trying to point out that the data accumulated by BugGuide is through images posted to the guide. The website has no access to images posted in the forums. Images posted to the guide will show up on searches, they can be linked in comments through thumbnails, they can be attached to Info pages, etc. Images posted to the forums are trapped in the particular forum where they are posted and the website and visitors have no other access to them. It seems a shame to lock them here where a casual visitor won't find them - but a serious student could still track them down and enjoy them.

Pleocoma rubiginosa transierra -Fire
A 7,000 acre Wild Fire hit the northern colony between Bishop and Toms place Feb. 4 thru 8 th . The colony was right in the middle. Look up " Map of Round Fire Inyo County " I almost went there instead of Twain Hardt. Fire may be the Single Most Destroyer of these Ancient Pleocoma Colony's . gst

It is best to post images into the guide
and then reference them here if you like, though the forums are really only for words. Posting them here means that essentially no one will see them since they aren't accessible to visitors to the guide. You can see the guide page here and notice it only has four images and almost no info, while plenty of info and your images are buried in this forum.

Pleocoma hoppingi 3
January 27 and 28 2014 I hit the area 10 miles east of Twain Hardt or so on Hwy 108 again with mixed results. Got some the first morning and then nothing the next. gst

Pleocoma hoppingi Trip 2
Hit 108 east of Twain Hardt (corner of 108 and wheeler road ) using my home made black lite traps got a nice series of what I am Hoping are hoppingi . 5:45 to 6:45 am flight time .

Pleocoma hoppingi
I hit a small flight of this species along Hwy 4 near Arnold in Calaveras County this morning. I'll try to take some photos tomorrow.

Follow Up Trip
I headed up there two days later and Nada . It was Foggy and rain was north .gst

Female Pleocoma badia?
Hello, I posted a few photos elsewhere on this site, but thought I'd join in this Rain Beetle discussion, since this seems to be a rare Female Rain Beetle sighting at my home. :-) But, how do I posted those photos here in the comments/forum section? Thanks! Maria Smith

Welcome to Pleocoma
Nice Maria ! I have seen them a couple times out walking . Some train of thought is that they ( the females) have enough fat for Two years of egg laying.. maybe, thus having to wonder out to another spot.. maybe ? Or maybe the Female is getting low on fat reserves and Losing it before death .. Beetle Dementia Perhaps? I do not know , but they do wander at times and it is Way easier to pick them up rather than dig down several feet to them . This is after you find the Lucky Female Burrow Hole !! Divots and dents happen alot under ground to the exoskeleton as things such as rocks, dirt, and roots are pressed into shell during transition from grub to adult . The Elytra - They can also harden in a bad place before the beetle can get clear out of the Soil . gst

Thanks Gene!
Hi Gene,
I just saw your comment, a few years late. Thanks! My first experience with this beetle. I was concerned that it was injured, so thanks for the explanation of the Elytra issue. :-)

No need to post them here
They are already posted to the guide. You can link to them if you want by typing [thumb: followed by the image number for example

The forums are not for posting images. They are for text only. You have already posted the images in the correct place

Pleocoma staff
I was surprised this morning to find two Pleocoma staff males buzzing around my porch light. I had heard from two other people last week that rain beetles were still out and about in my neighborhood, but I thought for sure the species was done for the season.

I thought P. fimbriata was done, too, but I see that Gene St. Denis has proven me wrong on that account, too. Maybe there's still some hope for rain beetle season here in northern California.

It will be interesting to see if this storm system will bring out the beetles in southern California.

Rain Beetle flites and trips
I had 3 cornell
drawers full of Pleocoma and long horns. That got crushed in the winter of
83 when the shed .. caved in with 10 feet of new snow at the my parents place in Kennedy Meadow .
I am starting over now as the kids are gone and I loved the Rain Beetle
hunting with Mike and Frank years ago down at so cal. I am very much
up for any trips or locations . I am looking for alive or dead little fuzzy Pleocoma and their Living Habitat again. gst

Delete & Prev | Delete

Pleocoma hoppingi

Now we have representative photos of all the described species.

12/10/2014 paynes creek and shingltown recon
With Boots on the ground I hit the area hard for a couple days and nites .Dug, lamped, and scouted .One nite at camp.. A couple Big Pleocoma hoppingi flys over head 25 feet and I get this guy to lamp . Any Ideas ? Really friendly little guy ! Nice Horn !! gst [

Your little Scarab
Hey there, sure wish I could have been out and about with you and Brady this season. Haven't been out once! That little scarab is a beauty...try Bulbolasmus hornii.

Final Pleocoma Trips
Thanks ! gst

Pleocoma hovorei
Yesterday morning, I hit a nice flight of this species near Paynes Creek, Tehama County, CA.

The flights of Pleocoma staff continue here at home.

heavy rain forecast for Dec. 11th and 12th, 2014
From 1 to 4 inches in most of northern California. So, it ain't over 'till it's over.

Extra specimens?
I would greatly appreciate any of the species being mentioned here for my comparative material, I have eight or so species but none of hoppingi or staff....I would gladly reimburse shipping or trade for something...

Pleocoma crinita
Louis LaPierre has been busy chasing down several of the Oregon species this week, including Pleocoma crinita. Now only one species, Pleocoma hoppingi, is missing from the guide.

Flights continue
At my home on the Ridge above Chico, CA I've seen Pleocoma staff nearly every day for the past week.

On Saturday, I ventured out to Oregon House, CA, the site where David Wilson posted photos of both P. staff and P. fimbriata: I encountered my first P. fimbriata flying during daylight and then after dark, found a large series under lights.

I've heard that several species are still flying in northern Oregon.

Anyone else seeing beetles in their area?

Pleocoma staff
I had two Pleocoma staff show up at the house this morning here on the Ridge above Chico, CA. We had about 0.78 inches of rain ending yesterday morning. There is another chance for rain starting tonight, so maybe I'll see larger flights in the next few days.

I am in Tahoe and would like to know if you can send me some specimans or species e of any extra little fuzzys. I will send money for postage. I am heading down to pioneer or shingles springs this afternoon /tonite for P. fim hunting . I am a grandpa and fishing guide and collect Plecoma .Let me know if you want to try for some P.ribiginosa trans or P. rubiginosa I used to live in Kennedy meadows and Bishop .(530) 544-6552 Cheers, gst

Good luck
I hope you have good luck tonight. I think the season may be over for that species, but you never know until you try. Please let us know how you fare. This is a good storm and if I didn't have to work tomorrow, I'd be standing somewhere out in the rain!

I would indeed like to try for P. rubiginosa at some point. That's a long drive for me, though, so I'm not sure I'll be able to go this season. I'm still hoping to chase after P. hoppingi this year, but we'll see what I manage to pull off.

Why don't you drop me an email (my address is on my user page) and we can discuss further.

just a week late. Got One !
or They are rather robust and large size Pleocoma. All said I was a dollar short and a week late .. the last storm and the one before it . Pioneer and other 49 er sites and sutter creek . Lots off Holes in the ground . gst

Beetle season
In the bay area we have clay type soil and the beetle that makes bee's abandon their hive is called a small hive beetle. They lay eggs about 8 inches deep in the soil then make their way into bee hives. Is their any organic ground treatments that can suppress them.

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