T.E.R:R.A.I.N - Taranaki Educational Resource: Research, Analysis and Information Network


Beetle (Ground) Megadromus vigil

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Coleoptera
Family: Carabidae
Genus: Megadromus
Species: M. vigil
Binominal name: Megadromus vigil

Megadromus vigil is a common New Zealand, beetle species from the family of ground beetles (Carabidae). The scientific name of the species was first validly published in 1846 by White. They are found under stones, fallen logs and leaf litter.
Megadromus vigil is a fairly flat, shiny, black beetle with a body length of 25 mm. It has fine grooves along its elytra (wing covers). It cannot fly as the elytra covers are fused. It has long, strong legs for running and strong jaws. It can bite. There are several long hairs on the edge of the thorax and on the edge of the head. (See photos below)
Like some of the other NZ ground beetles, Megadromus vigil produces an unpleasant smell when disturbed. The Maori called the smell ‘kurikuri’ because it smelt like a dirty dog.
They are active at night hunting other insects and invertebrates. Their grubs also live under leaf litter and they also have strong jaws.

A dorsal view. Notice several long hairs on edge of the thorax and the head. Click image to enlarge.


The underside.


The strong jaws. Notice the few long hairs on edge of its head.


The fused wing covers are removed to show there are no wings.

Thanks to Wikipedia for text and information: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0