Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada

Species Tenebrio obscurus - Dark Mealworm

Beetle - Tenebrio obscurus Beetle - Tenebrio obscurus Tenebrio molitor?  - Tenebrio obscurus Tenebrionidae - Tenebrio obscurus Mystery Basement Beetle - Tenebrio obscurus beetle - Tenebrio obscurus Tenebrio obscurus - female Tenebrio obscurus - female
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 Tenebrioninae
Tribe Tenebrionini
Genus Tenebrio (Mealworm beetles)
Species obscurus (Dark Mealworm)
Explanation of Names
Tenebrio obscurus Fabricius 1792
the common name refers to the darker colour of larvae compared to those of T. molitor
14-17 mm (1)
dorsum dull (unlike in T. molitor), front legs enlarged in males
scattered US records (1)
most of the temperate regions worldwide(2); introduced to NA ca. 1860(3)
In Canada most commonly reported in the litter of chicken coops, birdhouses, stables(2)
materials of animal and vegetable origin(2): refuse grain, coarse cereal, mill products, meat scraps, dead insects, and feathers(4)
storage pest (1)
Internet References
Works Cited
1.The Darkling Beetles of Florida and Eastern United States (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae).
Dunford et al. 2005. University of Florida Entomology and Nematology Dept., Gainesville.
2.Beetles associated with stored products in Canada: An identification guide
Bousquet Y. 1990. Research Branch Agriculture Canada, Publication 1837.
3.The Tenebrionidae (Coleoptera) of the Maritime Provinces of Canada
Majka C.G., Bouchard P., Bousquet Y. 2008. The Canadian Entomologist 140: 690-713.
4.Handbook of urban insects and arachnids: A handbook of urban entomology
Robinson W.H. 2005. Cambridge University Press.