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Photo#321754
Pictured Rove Beetle - Thinopinus pictus

Pictured Rove Beetle - Thinopinus pictus
Pescadero State Beach, San Mateo County, California, USA
July 30, 2009
This rove beetle was found at dusk along the edge of a marine estuary, scuttling away from some beach-stranded seaweed I had lifted up. It ran along the sand, and later tried to escape my camera by burrowing into the sand.

Based on images and description in Evans & Hogue's "Field Guide to Beetles of California", and the distinctive patterning, habitat, and behavior I'm confident enough of the ID to place it directly here (I'm assuming that if I'm actually off, it will be caught soon enough by one of the guardian coleopterists of BugGuide).

Images of this individual: tag all
Pictured Rove Beetle - Thinopinus pictus Pictured Rove Beetle - Thinopinus pictus Pictured Rove Beetle - Thinopinus pictus Pictured Rove Beetle - Thinopinus pictus Pictured Rove Beetle - Thinopinus pictus Pictured Rove Beetle - Thinopinus pictus Pictured Rove Beetle - Thinopinus pictus

The identification is correct
The identification is correct, what a wonderful series of photos of one of my favorite staphs. The pic of it biting your finger is my favorite. These flightless beetles are exclusively marine beach-associated and prey upon the beach fleas/scuds (amphipods) that also occur under the drift.

Adam

 
Thanks for confirmation Adam
I guess it's one of my favorite staphs too. It was kinda gnawing on my thumbnail in the pic you mentioned...what a large spread those mandibles can make! It had been fervently pinching my fingers earlier...very intent on expressing its dissatisfaction with being detained! I let it go soon thereafter :-)

I saw a few other rove beetle species on beaches not far away...hope to post photos sometime, but very busy w/ work now.

 
There's another related speci
There's another related species Hadro*pinus crass*us that has a similar ecology on beaches that is as large but much darker with no pattern. It would be neat to see if you found this one as well. Both are very interesting species I will probably never see unless I vacation out west sometime.


Adam

Nice!
Great find and sweet pics.

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