|Class:||Animals (Animalia) - Jointed Legs (Arthropoda) - Insects (Insecta)|
|Family:||Scarab Beetle (Scarabaeidae) iNaturalist Observation|
|Species:||Christmas Beetle (Anoplognathus montanus)|
|This Photo:||🔍Male, dorsal🔎|
Thank you Malcolm Worthing for confirming and Ethan Beaver for helping with the id of this species for us
General Species Information:
Found in the Adelaide Hills and possibly elsewhere
~30mm long. The green to purple reflections is diagnostic, as are the large hooks on the feet.
There are a number of similar genera in the Anoplognathini tribe; which this belongs.
Mark Hura explained "One of the ways to separate Anoplognathus, Calloodes and Repsimus from the other members in the Anoplognathina tribe is by looking at the hind margin of the pronotum. In those 3 genera, the pronotum is 'bilobed', ie. it has a small deviation around the top of the scutellum. This can sometimes be very slight, so care must be taken not to use this feature alone, however if the base of the pronotum is evenly convex, then chances are that it isn't one of those genera. ... The clypeus also varies ... All Anoplognathus are either convex or at most truncated."
Malcolm identified ours as a male and said "Male individuals often have an almost pointed/narrow snout (clypeus) where the edges are concave, like the individual you photographed. Females have a wider blunt snout. This rule generally appears to occur in most SA Anoplognathus species.
Also, the two spotted species can be distinguished by the number of teeth (points) on their front legs (foretibia). A. pallidicollis has 3 teeth, while A. olivieri has 2 teeth on each front leg.
Mark later said "The metallic sheen is only a useful feature here (SA) owing to the lack of other species, so if something out of it's range did turn up here, that wouldn't be a useful feature to go off."