Beetles live in almost every habitat apart from oceans and have around 420 000 worldwide described species, with an estimate of 50 000 species in Australia alone (Lawrence & Ślipiński, 2014). Most beetles feed on plant material or fungi, and some groups are carnivorous, feeding mainly on other insects. Beetles have two pairs of wings. The outer pair, called the elytra, is hardened and held above the two membranous wings which are unfolded when the beetle is flying. They have complete metamorphosis: cycling through egg, larva, pupa then to the reproductive adult. Their larvae have a hardened head with chewing mouthparts and their pupae have the legs and wings free from the main body. The antennas of females are usually smaller and more subtle than the males. This is likely to be due to the the production of pheromones by the females that the males have to detect.
Direct family links A-Z
Anthicidae Anthribidae Archeocrypticidae Attelabidae Belidae Brentidae Bostrichidae Bothrideridae Buprestidae Byrrhidae Cantharidae Carabidae Cerambycidae Chrysomelidae Cleridae Coccinellidae Corylophidae Cupedidae Curculionidae Dermestidae Dytiscidae Elateridae Erotylidae Eucnemidae Gyrinidae Histeridae Hydrophilidae Laemophloeidae Latridiidae Leiodidae Lucanidae Lycidae Melandryidae Meloidae Melyridae Mordellidae Mycteridae Nitidulidae Oedemeridae Passalidae Phalacridae Phycosecidae Prostomidae Protocucujidae Psephenidae Ptinidae Pyrochroidae Rhipiceridae Rhysodidae Salpingidae Scarabaeidae Scirtidae Scraptiidae Silphidae Staphylinidae Tenebrionidae Trogidae Trogossitidae Ulodidae Zopheridae
Quick Visual Finder – visit sections for snapshots of all respective documented families.
Lawrence, John F. & Ślipiński, Adam, (2014), Australian beetles. Volume 1, Morphology, classification and keys, CSIRO Publishing, Collingwood, Vic
Lawrence J.F & Britton, E.B. (1991) Chapter 35 Beetles in Insects of Australia, Volume 2: A Textbook for Students and Research Workers. 2nd Edition. Melbourne University Publishing pp 543-565