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Species Dynastes tityus - Eastern Hercules Beetle
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)
Superfamily Scarabaeoidea (Scarab, Stag and Bess Beetles)
Family Scarabaeidae (Scarab Beetles)
Subfamily Dynastinae (Rhinoceros Beetles)
Genus Dynastes (Hercules Beetles)
Species tityus (Eastern Hercules Beetle)
Other Common Names
Rhinoceros Beetle, Unicorn Beetle
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Orig. Comb: Scarabaeus tityus Linnaeus 1763
Explanation of Names
) is a giant of Greek mythology (Wikipedia--Tityos
The 'true' Hercules beetle is Dynastes hercules
(Linnaeus) which ranges as far n. as Veracruz, Mexico
2 spp. n. of Mex. (1)
(6 spp. in New World)
Adult 40-60 mm long (including the "horns" of the male) and 20 to 27 mm wide (2)
Huge size, greenish elytra with variable amounts of dark spots. Some are nearly black. Male has massive horns projecting forward from head and pronotum.
se US (TX-FL-MD-MO) (BG data)
Mostly: Jun-Aug (BG data)
Adults feed on rotting fruit, sap, to some extent.
Larvae live in rotting heartwood of logs and stumps, particularly hardwoods, but sometimes pine. Adults sometimes gather on logs (mating sites) (3)
. Males fight over breeding sites, such as cavities in oaks (4)
. Pupation occurs in late summer. Adults hibernate in pupal cells in decaying wood. Eggs laid following summer. Large larvae overwinter suggesting a two year life cycle. (2)
This is the heaviest North American beetle, reportedly.
at high risk of endangerment due to the EAB (5)
Horn - Grant's Hercules Beetle (Western)
Ritcher's (1966) key to separating larvae:
Claws bearing 2 setae (Fig. 332) --- Dynastes
Claws bearing 3 or 4 setae (Figs. 333 and 334) --- Strategus (2)
Glaser, J. 1976. The Biology of Dynastes tityus (Linn.) in Maryland (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae). Coleopterists Bulletin 30(2): 133-138.
Arnett, p. 179, fig. 438 (6)
Brimley, p. 207 lists for "whole season" in North Carolina. (7)
Dillon p. 551, plate LIV #1, 2 (8)
Harpootlian, p. 114, fig. 228 (9)
Papp, p. 192, figs. 655-656 (10)
White, p. 147, plate 8 (11)
- Blake Newton, Dept of Ento, Univ of KY, 2004
- Mike Quinn, 2008
|1.||American Beetles, Volume II: Polyphaga: Scarabaeoidea through Curculionoidea|
Arnett, R.H., Jr., M. C. Thomas, P. E. Skelley and J. H. Frank. (eds.). 2002. CRC Press LLC, Boca Raton, FL.
|2.||White Grubs and Their Allies, a Study of North American Scarabaeoid Larvae|
Paul O. Ritcher. 1966. Oregon State University Press, Corvallis. 219 pp.
|4.||Florida's Fabulous Insects|
Mark Deyrup, Brian Kenney, Thomas C. Emmel. 2000. World Publications.
|6.||How to Know the Beetles|
Ross H. Arnett, N. M. Downie, H. E. Jaques. 1980. Wm. C. Brown Publishers.
|7.||Insects of North Carolina|
C.S. Brimley. 1938. North Carolina Department of Agriculture.
|8.||A Manual of Common Beetles of Eastern North America|
Dillon, Elizabeth S., and Dillon, Lawrence. 1961. Row, Peterson, and Company.
|9.||Scarab beetles (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae) of South Carolina|
Phillip J. Harpootlian. 2001. Clemson University Public Service.
|10.||Introduction to North American Beetles|
Charles S. Papp. 1984. Entomography Pubns.
|11.||Peterson Field Guides: Beetles|
Richard E. White. 1983. Houghton Mifflin Company.