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CATOXANTHA OPULENTA
Jewel beetles - Buprestidae
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KINGDOM : Animalia

PHYLUM : Arthropoda

CLASS : Insecta

ORDER : Coleoptera

FAMILY :Buprestidae

SUBFAMILY :Chrysochroinae

GENUS :Catoxantha

SPECIES :Catoxantha Opulenta

Emerald ash borer Buprestidae (PDF)

CATOXANTHA OPULENTA
Jewel beetles

Catoxantha opulenta is a species of jewel beetles belonging to the family Buprestidae, subfamily Chrysochroinae.

Catoxantha opulenta can reach a length of about 45 and 60 millimetres . This beautiful and quite common jewel beetle has metallic dark bluish-green elytra with thick and prominent black costae and two yellow transverse bands. Abdominal sternum is yellow. It bores the wood of Chukrasia velutina and Lagerstroemia speciosa. The life-cycle is annual. Adults emerge in June.

This beetle is present in Thailand, Malaysia, western Indonesia and Philippines.

Buprestidae is a family of beetles known as jewel beetles or metallic wood-boring beetles because of their glossy iridescent colors. The family is among the largest of the beetles, with some 15,000 species known in 450 genera. In addition, almost 100 fossil species have been described.

The larger and more spectacularly colored jewel beetles are highly prized by insect collectors. The elytra of some Buprestidae species have been traditionally used in beetlewing jewellery and decoration in certain countries in Asia, like India, Thailand and Japan.

Description and ecology

Shape is generally cylindrical or elongate to ovoid, with lengths ranging from 3 to 80 mm although most species are under 20 mm . Catoxantha, Chrysaspis, Euchroma and Megaloxantha contain the largest species. A variety of bright colors are known, often in complicated patterns. The iridescence common to these beetles is not due to pigments in the exoskeleton, but instead is caused by structural coloration, in which microscopic texture in their cuticle selectively reflects specific frequencies of light in particular directions. This is the same effect that makes a compact disc reflect multiple colors.

The larvae bore through roots, logs, stems, and leaves of various types of plants, ranging from trees to grasses. The wood boring types generally favor dying or dead branches on otherwise-healthy trees, while a few types attack green wood; some of these are serious pests capable of killing trees and causing major economic damage, such as the invasive emerald ash borer. Some species are attracted to recently burned forests to lay their eggs. They can sense pine wood smoke from up to 50 miles away, and can see infrared light, helping them to zero in as they get closer to a forest fire.

Ten species of flatheaded borers of the family Buprestidae feed on spruce and fir, but hemlock is their preferred food source . As with roundheaded borers, most feeding occurs in dying or dead trees, or close to injuries on living trees. Damage becomes abundant only where a continuing supply of breeding material is available. The life history of these borers is similar to that of the roundheaded borers, but some exceedingly long life cycles have been reported under adverse conditions. Full-grown larvae, up to 25 mm long, are characteristically flattened, the anterior part of the body being much broader than the rest. The bronzed adults are usually seen only where suitable material occurs in sunny locations.capable of killing trees and causing major economic damage, such as the invasive emerald ash borer. Some species are attracted to recently burned forests to lay their eggs. They can sense pine wood smoke from up to 50 miles away, and can see infrared light, helping them to zero in as they get closer to a forest fire.

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