Suborder Adephaga

A large group of mainly predacious beetles. Adults with the hind coxae fused rigidly to the metasternum (i.e. immovable) and extending posteriorly to the hind margin of the first visible abdominal sternite; antennae 11-segmented and usually filiform or moniliform. Larvae usually with claw-bearing tarsi.

Superfamily CARABOIDEA

1. Family CARABIDAE (ground beetles)

A large family of fast-moving, mainly nocturnal beetles with a characteristic body shape (Fig. 57), most ground beetles being readily recognized as such on sight; each elytron usually with nine longitudinal ridges, separated by distinct furrows or series of punctures; elytra sometimes fused to form a rigid body shield; exoskeleton usually black, but often with a metallic sheen. Larvae campodeiform, with ten abdominal segments; tarsi with one or two claws; mandibles pincer-like and powerful; cerci present on the ninth abdominal segment. Adults and larvae of most species are carnivorous, and several are important predators of crop pests; some species are phytophagous, several feeding on plant seeds.

EXAMPLES: Bembidion spp. (brassy ground beetles), Harpalus rufipes (strawberry seed beetle), Pterostichus spp. (strawberry ground beetles), Trechus spp., Zabrus tenebrioides (cereal ground beetle).

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