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

Genus Selenophorus

red-brown-tinged black ground beetle - Selenophorus Selenophorus fatuus Ground Beetle - Selenophorus palliatus 0612C02 - Selenophorus fatuus 919C02 - Selenophorus striatopunctatus 1011C07 - Selenophorus fatuus Bembidion? - Selenophorus Selenophorus aeneopiceus
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Coleoptera (Beetles)
Suborder Adephaga (Ground and Water Beetles)
Family Carabidae (Ground Beetles)
Subfamily Harpalinae
Supertribe Harpalitae
Tribe Harpalini
Subtribe Harpalina
Genus Selenophorus
Typically pronounced either si-LEE-NO-fer-us or silly-NO-fer-us. First case: major accent on bold capitals and minor accent on plain capitals. Second case: only one accent on the plain capitals. In either case, the only long vowel is the second e in Selenophorus. [PWM note]
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
The recent review of Nearctic Selenophorus by Messer & Raber (2021)(1) supplements Bousquet's 2012 catalogue(2). The authors report 8 new species, taxonomic changes including 13 new synonyms, several range extensions, and a key to the 15 species groups and 37 Nearctic species.
Explanation of Names
Selenophorus Dejean 1829. Greek: "seleno" (= moon) + "phorus" (= bearing) is a reference to the very shiny appearance of some members of this genus. [PWM note]
With the new taxonomic treatments reported by Messer & Raber (1), the revised New World checklist of Selenophorus contains 177 valid species-group taxa (37 are Nearctic), of which 20 (8 Nearctic) are in the subgenus Celiamorphus and 157 (29 Nearctic) are in the subgenus Selenophorus.
Serial punctures in elytral striae 2, 5, 7 are characteristic of these four sister genera in North America: Selenophorus, Amblygnathus, Athrostictus, Discoderus. The genera are distinguished in identification keys by Noonan (1985) and Ball & Bousquet (2001).
Western Hemisphere: New World (southern Canada to Argentina), mostly Neotropical(2) plus a few Pacific Islands. New range extensions for the Nearctic species of Selenophorus are continuously updated at the post-2012 Caraboidea Registry. (3)
Print References
Ball, G.E., and Y. Bousquet. 2001. Carabidae Latreille, 1810, Chapter 6, pp. 33-132. In Arnett, R.H. and M. C. Thomas (eds.) American Beetles, 1. CRC Press, Boca Raton, London, New York, Washington, D.C.

Horn, G.H. 1880. Critical notes on the species of Selenophorus of the United States. Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society, 19(107): 178-183. (4)

Noonan, G.R. 1985. Classification and names of the Selenophori group (Coleoptera: Carabidae: Harpalini) and of nine genera and subgenera placed in incertae sedis within Harpalina. Milwaukee Public Museum Contributions in Biology and Geology No. 64. 92 pp.