Giant Jewel Beetle
S5, Male, profile
Ellura
Giant Jewel Beetle
S1, Male, Antenna
 
                      
Giant Jewel Beetle (Temognatha heros)Class: Animals (Animalia) - Jointed Legs (Arthropoda) - Insects (Insecta)
Order: Beetles (Coleoptera)
Family: Jewel Beetle (Buprestidae)     iNaturalist Observation
Species: Giant Jewel Beetle (Temognatha heros)
This Photo:     🔍S3 & S5 Epipleuron Variation🔎
Other names: Large Jewel Beetle or Yellow Jewel Beetle

Thank you Martin Lagerwey, Mark Hura, Joshua Gan, Patrick Wake & Paul M Hutchinson for confirming the id of this species for us

General Species Information:
Found on Ellura (in the Murray Mallee, SA) and elsewhere
Males we found were ~45-50mm long, while the female was ~54mm long.
A huge beetle, the biggest we've ever seen. They are reported to be up to 60 - 80mm long.
The female seemed to have slightly smaller antennae segments. Males have a darker patch on the front of the their pronotum; but we didn't find this very obvious.
It's interesting to note there are no obvious ocelli, yet they fly extremely well.
Notice the asymmetric venation in the elytra of S2 & S5.
We noted the front edge of the elytra on the males we found was quite angular; while on the one female was rounded. We thought this might be a gender variation. We discussed this with Peter Lang, who kindly examined 10 female & 10 male specimens and conclude "that the male/female difference you noted on the margin of the elytron (= 'epipleuron') was just an individual variant."; as all but one female he examined also had the angular 'epipleuron' (along with all males).
We also learnt a new term for the front margin of the elytron

We photographed 6 specimens (2F) in Jan & Feb.

Copyright © 2023 Brett & Marie Smith. All Rights Reserved. Photographed 10-Feb-2023
This species is an Australian Native Species, not listed in the SA Murray Mallee Survey of 2010.