Brown Comb-clawed Beetle
Orange-footed Black Beetle
|Class:||Animals (Animalia) - Jointed Legs (Arthropoda) - Insects (Insecta) iNaturalist Observation|
|Family:||Darkling Beetle (Tenebrionidae)|
|Species:||Orange-footed Black Beetle (Batessia westwoodi)|
Thank you Mark Hura for identifying this species for us
General Species Information:
Found on Ellura (in the Murray Mallee, SA) and elsewhere
~20mm long. Many of the beetles in the Cyphaleina sub-tribe can look very similar. The corners of the pronotum vary in size and shape quite a bit within species.
There is another similar genus, Nyctozoilus, which has diagnostic hairs on the rear legs of the males. Hence the reason we included hind legs shots to show they are bare here.
When we were wondering if it was B. championi Mark said "B. westwoodi and championi have very similar descriptions, but when placed side by side, the differences become a little more obvious. Unfortunately most of the features used to distinguish between the two are variable to an extent, thus further confusing them. This biggest difference externally is in the prothorax, and specifically the hind angles which are preceeded by and abrupt constriction in westwoodi, and by an even sweeping curve in championi. A syntype image for B. championi can be found here.
Another major difference is the shape of the elytra which is somewhat tear-shaped in westwoodi (widest near apical third), and almost parallel in championi."
We found one specimen in Feb.