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Beetle - What kind? - Prionus pocularis - female

Beetle - What kind? - Prionus pocularis - Female
Birmingham, Jefferson County, Alabama, USA
July 11, 2005
Size: 2 1/2" - 3"
I am assuming female (see other photo - laying eggs in soil); solid brown; found in empty garbage can upside down; moved to grass; immediately started laying eggs

Images of this individual: tag all
Beetle - What kind? - Prionus pocularis - female Beetle - What kind? - Prionus pocularis - female

Thanks for pointing me in the
Thanks for pointing me in the right direction. I think I must have missed this before, because the picture I have looks more black than brown. Anyway, I think it might be a Giant Root Borer. I am so excited to have this visitor (The largest North-American long-horned beetle). The only difference: My book says they lay their eggs singly in soil close to food supply. Could it be that she was just so frantic about laying her eggs (it was 6a.m. and she had been trapped in a garbage can all night), that she would lay more than one in a spot. She was laying up to three in a hole, each hole 2-3 inches apart. Also, none of this was near decomposing plant matter

Very interesting beetle
It is definitely a long horn in the subfamily Prioninae. But what species? Way too big and robust for Orthosoma. Superficially it resembles Prionus pocularis but it's just too big and the antennae seem a bit too thin, even for a female. Prionus laticollis is bigger and sometimes they can be brown (although almost always black). Also female laticollis have that habit of rapidly running around in circles seemingly laying eggs in the soil willy-nilly (apparently the larvae can migrate far underground to find good roots) but laticollis always has crinkly elytra. The pronotal spine rule out Archodontes and Stenodontes. Was it really 3 inches long? I know there is a southeasten Derobrachus sp. but I thought that was confined to south Florida. This is a very interesting beetle!

P. pocularis
Derobrachus brevicollis occurs throughout the SE from NC to AL and FL, but has eleven antennomeres (like Orthosoma) - I count 12 on the above.

Root Borer
This is some species of root borer

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