Tuesday, August 21, 2012

"It looks like an uncooked sausage"

One of my mantras when I go out to look for bugs and other critters is "Turn over that decaying log." You always have a great chance of finding neat stuff when you look through decaying wood, including creatures such as centipedes, millipedes, spiders, slugs, and of course, insects.

Today was no exception.

"O hai!"

After rolling over a particularly good log, I looked into a hole bored into the wood and found what one girl described as "an uncooked sausage" before she backed away to find some prettier biology. Despite its leathery appearance a bird or small mammal would look upon this beetle grub with much more glee. Then it would gobble this sucker down in a heartbeat.

A grub in the hand is worth...two in the log?

Judging by the size of this grub, I'm guessing that it's a grub of the Eastern Hercules Beetle (Dynastes tityus), though I'm not completely sure. I've uploaded it to BugGuide and hope to hear back about it soon. 

While decaying logs may not be the prettiest addition to wooded areas, they're still quite useful to the ecology of the forest. Without them, beetle grubs like this one would lose their only habitat, thus denying us their impressive beauty as adult beetles.

2 comments:

  1. You beetle people, always turning logs! I much prefer finding sunlit patches and watching flies congregate and looking for mates! There are some really cool families which use logs as dance halls and battle fields.

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  2. Dance halls and battlefields, you say? I might need to keep my eyes peeled for those... I do enjoy watching robber flies--everywhere is a battlefield when they're around.

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