Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Eyed Click Beetle (Alaus oculatus)

I was photographing some wildflowers at Fort Yargo State Park when something flew straight at me and landed on my t-shirt. I was sorting myself out to pick it off and photograph it when it fell into the grass. I wasn’t able to find it but had gotten a good enough glimpse of it to know it was an Eyed Click Beetle (Alaus oculatus).

Although I couldn’t photograph this specific beetle, I had photographed one down by our creek a couple of years ago. Here it is…
I almost didn’t notice it in the grass-like Wartremoving herb (Murdannia keisak) that grows on the ledge above the creek. I moved out into the open to photograph it.

Even in the open - in the middle of the photograph - it's not very obvious. The ‘eyes’ on its thorax do, however, interfere with its ability to blend completely into its background.

A close up. It’s a handsome specimen
Click on an image to view a larger image

Identification resources:

- Bug Guide: Eyed Click Beetle (Alaus oculatus)

- Clemson University, Entomology: Eyed Click Beetle (Alaus oculatus)


Joy K. said...

They are very odd, aren't they? I saw one last year sitting perched on a vertical piece of wood, not blending in at all. Rather startling!

JSK said...

Yes! I remember I was startled at first - until I realized what it was. Then I enjoyed it.
Growing up in Australia, I was used to the smaller brown ones.

Anonymous said...

I have a tiki bar in back of my house in orlando florida, I looked down at something that moved. It was two (as I just found out) eyed click beetles I guess mating. I have to research it more but I dont there from Florida.