Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Beetle-hawks 2

Elytra (shell) from a large Pasimachus ground beetle found with pellets near an American Kestrel feeding post.

This beetle shell was found near (a few feet away from) an American Kestrel feeding post in Lakehurst, Ocean Co., NJ (taken June 22nd). I moved it over for composition purposes, but I'm pretty sure the kestrel ate it (note the pellets with insect bits in them). Also it has a hole in it that I could picture a kestrel's beak tip going into. Below is (I think) the same beetle species found dead about 50 feet away from the post. According to bugguide.net, it's in the genus Pasimachus, in the family Carabidae - the ground beetles. This adds weight to my theory that summer kestrels are as much beetle-hawks as they are vole-hawks, or sparrow-hawks. And I guess they are grasshopper-hawks, too, as I found a large grasshopper wing nearby, as well. See previous post on beetle-hawks here.

Thanks to bugguide.net I know that these big monsters are in the genus Pasimachus (Family Carabidae, the ground beetles), and that it is a flightless species, having wing shells ("elytra") that are fused in the middle.

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