Smile! The world is a beautiful place (^_^)

dock

Two close-up shots of a female Green dock beetle (Gastrophysa viridula), showing off her metallic shimmer, which can be gold green, blue, purple, violet, or red (depending on the light).

Why the name “dock” beetle? Because they mainly feed on dock and green sorrel. This makes them natural biological controllers and an ally to organic farmers (and an enemy of gardeners, as rhubarb is a dock plant).

How do I know it’s a female? Firstly, because she’s bigger (7 mm) than a male (~ 4 mm). Secondly, because she’s heavily pregnant! In the second picture, you can see that it looks like the her clothes are several sizes too small for her body, she’s so big that the wing cases have been totally displaced. She’s about to lay 1,000 eggs (yikes) that look like tiny rugby balls. More info & pictures in this blog post here.

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15 responses

  1. Yikes!!! I love the way you captured this remarkable creature!

    July 9, 2017 at 6:19 PM

    • Thanks Rebecca! Yes it’s not something for entomophobiacs.. 🙂

      July 9, 2017 at 6:25 PM

  2. Amazing pics!whata beautiful colour that little gal is. I could make a poster out of this as well😊

    July 9, 2017 at 6:31 PM

    • Thanks Tony! Yikes, I’m not sure I’d like to see this bug any bigger than it already was.. That would be a very small poster 🙂

      July 9, 2017 at 6:45 PM

  3. Lovely colours and great composition. That blurred-out background, with just a hint of detail, really makes it! 🙂

    July 9, 2017 at 6:56 PM

    • Thanks John! I hope to see more closeup shots from you as well, really enjoyed your last post! 🙂

      July 9, 2017 at 7:44 PM

  4. Beautiful macros of these beautiful beetles! I haven’t seen these for a while here.

    July 9, 2017 at 9:20 PM

    • Thanks Pete! I’ll make a new attempt when I’ve gotten a flash, very curious to try your technique! 🙂

      July 10, 2017 at 5:25 AM

  5. Gotlieb

    Beautiful! You must revisit her after she gave birth so we can enjoy the baby pics!

    Sent from my iPad

    July 10, 2017 at 7:21 PM

    • Thanks Edith! The babies aren’t very cute, they look a lot like ladybug larvae. But if I see them, I’ll take pictures 🙂

      July 10, 2017 at 7:42 PM

  6. Beautiful close-ups, Calee.
    I love the iridescent color of the beetle.

    July 11, 2017 at 8:05 PM

  7. I love the metallic sheen on these! Awesome! 🙂

    July 12, 2017 at 7:40 PM

    • Thanks Tom! 🙂 Yes that metallic color is really nice.

      July 12, 2017 at 7:47 PM

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