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MORMOCYLE VIOLIN BEETLE
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Classification

Phylum: Arthropoda

Class: Insecta

Order: Coleoptera

Family: Carabidae

Subfamily: Lebiinae

Genus: Mormolyce

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MORMOLYCE PHYLLODES VIOLIN BEETLE

Violin beetles or Banjo Beetles are ground beetles in the subfamily Lebiinae. They all possess distinctive violin-shaped elytra and live between layers of bracket fungi.

Mormolyce phyllodes can reach a length of 60-100 millimetres . These beetles possess a flat leaf-shaped, shiny black or brown body with distinctive violin-shaped translucent elytra . This characteristic mimicry protects them against predators, while their flat shaped body allow them to dwell in soil cracks or under the bark and leaves of trees. Head and pronotum are very elongated, with long antennae and the legs are long and slender.

Both adults and larvae are predators, feeding on insect larvae. For defense purposes, they secrete the poisonous butyric acid. The larvae live between layers of bracket fungi, genus Polyporus. Their development lasts 8-9 months, while pupation lasts 8-10 weeks. Adults fly from august to november.

Distribution and habitat

This species can be found in rainforests of Southeast Asia (Brunei, Indonesia, Java, Malaysia and Sumatra).

There are five species all contained in the genus Mormolyce

Mormolyce castelnaudi Deyrolle, 1862 - Malaysia, Thailand

Mormolyce hagenbachi Westwood, 1862 - Malaysia

Mormolyce phyllodes Hagenbach, 1825 - Indonesia, Malaysia

Mormolyce quadraticollis Donckier, 1899

Mormolyce tridens Andrewes, 1941

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