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What's attracting these 'Bessie Beetles'?

We've Just finished landscaping our new church and are having a tug of war with some dark beetles we believe are 'Bessie Beetles' ( These beetles are invading the building or at least die trying! There are numerous dead carcasses on the concrete walk leading into the church. Several rooms in the building continually have live beetles scurrying about to entertain the children and horrify Mothers!

I wondered if they were brought in in the truckloads of hardwood mulch we spread around the church, although there is no mulch near the front doors where most are noticed. There is no water in the particular rooms where the bugs are observed but they are in the vicinity of the bathrooms. Most people are in favor of having a pest control service eliminate them & I suppose it's necessary. Anyone have any ideas about the least offensive/invasive means of discouraging or eliminating them? The dry sandy lawn area around the church doesn't seem like the kind of habitat a bessie bug would ordinarily choose. How to deal with them is a dilemma & we'd love to hear any suggestions!

Thank you!

take pics of the actual beetles and post in ID Request
i bet they are not 'bess beetles' (the name misspelled in you post here)

I suspect these are not actually bess beetles...
I've never heard of these coming into buildings, and you're right that a dry sandy lawn is nothing like their correct habitat. Scarites, on the other hand, is a similarly shaped beetle that lives underground and often winds up indoors. Compare: bess beetle and Scarites (note the antennae)

In any event, neither of these are pests of any sort (bess beetles help break down wood, and Scarites are predators of other insects), so if it were up to me I don't think pest control is necessary. Sweep away the dead ones and toss the live ones outdoors. Could turn it into a learning opportunity for the children even, if they're having fun with the beetles.

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