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Funded in part by award DEB0447694 from the National Science Foundation to M. Caterino.

Last updated 01/16/2009

  California Beetle Project > Species Pages > Brachinus gebhardis


Scientific name: Brachinus gebhardis Erwin
    Order Coleoptera
    Superfamily Caraboidea
    Family Carabidae

Images (click to enlarge)

What it looks like: 6.0-8.5 mm in length. 4.5-4.6 mm in width. Wing-covers blue with highly defined ridges and with dense hair only on the outermost ridge. Head, pronotum (dorsal part of the thorax), and abdominal segments reddish brown.

Where you'll find it: Coast and plains of south and central California, southern Baja California, and southeastern Arizona.

Natural History: Much in regard to the lifestyle of B. gebhardis is unknown or unverified. B. pallidus, which is very similar to B. gebhardis, has been studied more rigorously. Because of their likeness, we can assume that B. gebhardis has a lifestyle similar to that of B. pallidus in that it is a generalist predator and scavenger. It also can be assumed to be a parasite of the pupae of streamside insects in its larval stage, but the species of insects that it has a parasitic relationship with is not known. B. gebhardis is present mainly in streamside areas. It is not found in the harder to reach areas that other Brachinus occupy, but it can fit into small crevices. This makes it hard to spot.

This page was written by David Honsberger, a 2005 participant in the Quasars to Sea Stars teen program.

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