Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada
Clickable Guide
Moths Butterflies Flies Caterpillars Flies Dragonflies Flies Mantids Cockroaches Bees and Wasps Walkingsticks Earwigs Ants Termites Hoppers and Kin Hoppers and Kin Beetles True Bugs Fleas Grasshoppers and Kin Ticks Spiders Scorpions Centipedes Millipedes



Species Chaetocnema rileyi

Boca Chica Flea Beetle - Chaetocnema rileyi Boca Chica Flea Beetle - Chaetocnema rileyi Boca Chica Flea Beetle - Chaetocnema rileyi
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Coleoptera (Beetles)
Suborder Polyphaga
No Taxon (Series Cucujiformia)
Superfamily Chrysomeloidea (Longhorn and Leaf Beetles)
Family Chrysomelidae (Leaf Beetles)
Subfamily Galerucinae (Skeletonizing Leaf Beetles and Flea Beetles)
Tribe Alticini (Flea Beetles)
Genus Chaetocnema
Species rileyi (Chaetocnema rileyi)
Other Common Names
Boca Chica Flea Beetle (BCFB)
Chaetocnema - Key toc NEE ma
Explanation of Names
Chaetocnema rileyi R. White 1996
patronym for Edward G. Riley
2.3-3.5 mm (1)
distinguished based on a combination of the vertex of head with a few punctures above each eye, the pronotal punctures distinct and evenly distributed, the pronotal margin posterior to the anterior pronotal angle lacking an irregularity, lateral margins of body not constricted at the junction of elytra and pronotum, and the shape of the male genitalia. (1)
known only from vicinity of the terminus of Boca Chica Blvd, State Hwy 4, immediately west of beach-side dunes, Cameron Co., TX - Map (1)(2)
Habitat Photos (March 2009): Photo 1, Photo 2 Photo 3, Photo 4, Photo 5 - 25.997701, -97.152211
series of spmns in the TAMUIC(3) coll'ed Mar, May, July, Oct:
Oct. 19, 1990 - short series
May 7, 1991 - short series
Oct. 26, 1991 - Holotype in the USNM/Smithsonian
Oct. 31, 1991 - long series
Mar. 6-7, 2009 - long series (includes BugGuide spmn)
July 7, 2017 - long series
Associated with Marsh Fimbry - (Fimbristylis castanea, Cyperaceae) (4)(5)
This species (or species complex) ranges from Long Island south along the Atlantic coast and west along the Gulf coast to northern Mexico, the tip of Yucatan peninsula, and also in coastal areas of Cuba and the Bahamas. (Kral 1971)
Life Cycle
Chaetocnema larvae are known to be subterranean, feeding on the underground portions of their host plants (Jolivet & Hawkeswood 1995; Riley & King 2009)
Type Locality: Boca Chica Beach (behind Dunes), Cameron, Texas
Texas considers this to be a "Species of Greatest Conservation Need" (SGCN) (6)
Print References
Cowan, C.P. 1983. Flora de Tabasco. Listados Floríst. México 1: 1–123.
Jolivet, P. & T.J. Hawkeswood. 1995. Host-plants of Chrysomelidae of the World: An essay about the relationships between the leaf-beetles and their food-plants. Backhuys Publishers, Leiden, The Netherlands. xiv + 281 pp.
Kral, R.D. 1971. A treatment of Abildgaardia, Bulbostylis and Fimbristylis (Cyperaceae) for North America. Sida 4(2): 57–227. (Full Text)
Riley, E.G. & J.E. King. 2009. Element record datasheets submitted to Texas Parks & Wildlife Department, Wildlife Division, Austin. (1)
White, R.E. 1996. A revision of the genus Chaetocnema of America north of Mexico (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae). American Entomological Institute 29(1): 1-158. (4)
Internet References
Type Info - Smithsonian
Fimbristylis castanea - Missouri Botanical Garden