These amazing creatures are easily recognized by their shell-like exteriors. The Coleoptera order is represented in 25,000 different species in North America alone, and upwards of 350,000 known examples worldwide. It is the largest order in the animal kingdom. Beetles are unique in nearly every insect way and diverse, coming in many varied shapes, colors and forms and each are found in diverse environments according to their particular lifestyles and food requirements.
Beetles begin life as larva and mature (via metamorphosis) into the beetles we recognize. Some larvae attach themselves to host animals for nutrition during the metamorphasis phase. Eggs of Beetles may be laid as individual units or in large “nests” but they are almost always found nearfood source of some kind. Beetles mature over a matter of months or even several years. This means that some species may produce multiple generations in a single season while others may not.
Beetles (and their larvae) have held a distasteful place in the world of humans where their appetite for plant matter has made them a traditional annual pest. They tend to devastate food crops, forests and residential trees, which directly affects the human way of life in many ways. The two most notorious tree-killing species in America are the Emerald Ash Borer and the Asian Longhorn Beetle – both “imported ” from overseas. While some Beetle species have earned themselves bad reputations in the world of humans, others have proven beneficial to general control of other pests, plant control and the pollination of many flower species. Some beetle population numbers are used to measure the health of certain complex biological factors – if a certain Beetle population is healthy, it’s environment is healthy as well.