Sunday, March 04, 2007

Rhinoceros Beetle

My wife, my father-in-law, the girls and myself went down to the local Leagues Club for a nice Sunday morning breakfast. As we were leaving the club I noticed a dead Rhinoceros Beetle (Xylotrupes gideon - Family Scarabaeidae) in the garden. I picked it up and brought it home with me so I could take some photos. All are clickable for a larger image.

Since I was a kid, I've always been fascinated with these particular beetles. They make a very loud hiss when they are threatened. Apparently, in Asia they are popular children's pets, being clean and quite harmless. They are also used for gambling in Asia, with two male beetles forced to try and knock each other off a wooden log.

They are noted for the protuberances on their heads which look like horns. Here's a picture of him so you can see his size in comparison to my fingers. He's a relatively small one; I've seen some that are twice as large as that.

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