Polyphylla decemlineata

A good resolution for the new year is to blacklight more. Blacklighting is simply a very enjoyable activity that allows one to view insects on the night shift. Last year I caught some cool beetles at a blacklight in Arizona  and

Mr. Personality has arrived, let the party begin!

Mr. Personality has arrived, let the party begin!

came away with a pretty good story too, but I had more fun blacklighting during a national moth week event at the City of Rocks National Reserve. Early on we had Myzia interrupta and Cisthene barnesii at the light, but my favorite was Mr. Personality – Polyphylla decemlineata. Polyphylla decemlinata makes a loud chuffing sound, is elegantly colored, almost frenetic with activity, and (as the photo shows) has lamellate antennae spread out looking for the ladies!

G.H. Horn (1881) revised the genus which has since been rerevised. Horn also described Polyphylla larvae back in 1888. The species is considered something of an agricultural pest, but dang they are cool.


2 thoughts on “Polyphylla decemlineata

  1. Jon Quist

    Yeah they sure let you know their life story when you pick them up. I get lots of P. decimlineata around my home, I still admire their beauty despite how common they can be.


  2. biologistsoup Post author

    I have to agree that they are very admirable, Jon. Plectrodera scalator is another beetle that really lets you know when you pick one off the blacklight sheet, and is also (in the right habitats) super abundant and remarkable.



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