Review of the tribe Melolonthini in the southeastern United States
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Species M. Polyphemus
MECYNORHINA POLYPHEMUS CONFLUENS
Mecynorhina polyphemus ( previously know as Chelorrhina polyphemus ) is a large colorful scarab beetle of the subfamily Cetoniinae found in dense tropical African forests, sometimes called the Polyphemus beetle, Giant African fruit beetle, Gren flower beetle. It is a frequent feeder on fruits and sap flows from tree wounds.
The larvae develop in decomposing log compost. The third instar constructs an ovoid cocoon for metamorphosis and attaches it to a solid surface. In captivity, the instar may attach the cocoon to a glass container wall allowing the opportunity to view the transformation.
Male and female are dimorphic. The female has a shiny surface texture, reflective prismatic coloration, and no horns. The male has horns and flat, velvety coloration. Females are typically 35-55 mm, while males range from 35-80 mm.
Giant African Fruit beetles are quite large beetles that live in tropical Africa. They are shiny green in color with an rusty orange hue and they have beige-yellow stripes and spots on their back. Their head is beige-yellow and their legs and feet are blackish green. This species reaches a size of around 2 inch (5 cm) . Males become bigger than females and have an antler on their head. Females do not have this antler.
The grubs are white-yellow with a brown head. They are born as tiny white larvae, but when fully grown they can be as thick as your finger.
The eggs and grubs of this beetle can be found inside the soil. The grubs stay underground eat rotten fruit and decomposing leaves. The adult beetles eat fruit.
From egg to beetle takes about 4 to 6 months depending on temperature. The beetle will live for 2 to 5 months. Higher temperatures will decrease the developmental time tremendously.