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green carabid - Lebia moesta

green carabid - Lebia moesta
Pack Forest, Pierce County, Washington, USA
July 11, 2009
Size: ~6mm
Larger version of this image here.


Moved tentatively

ID confirmed by T.L. Erwin

If truly dull blackish
luster dorsally (no metallic sheen green to blue) then likely Lebia moesta, otherwise consider L. viridis. Specimen examined in hand and under scope might be necessary.

larger file
I don't know if it helps at all, but I added a link to a larger version of this image. I didn't keep the specimen and have no other photos.

I see no metallic reflections
so your image in my opinion could very well fit black Lebia moesta despite your reported large size estmate of "~6 mm". Almost all L. moesta are under 5 mm while L. viridis with its characteristic metallic sheen (blue to green) reaches 6 mm. Assessing true luster from one photograph can be misleading as you know. Both species are now known to occur in WA.

I think I did actually measure the beetle, and the "~" means it was not holding still and it was close to 6 but unlikely less than 5. We may have to leave this at the genus level.

Yes, best to stay at genus
until someone expresses a strong opinion on which way to go. For the record, I have many reference specimens of both species and the difference in luster is obvious/constant when dorsal surfaces are examined microscopically. Other morphological differences previously published are unreliable/variable in my experience.

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