Soldier Beetles – ménage à trois

While exploring the Diemer Vijfhoek, a nature reserve just east of Amsterdam, I spotted some soldier beetles seemingly involved in a ménage à trois. Soldier beetles are a common outdoor insect that can be abundant accidental invaders as either larvae or adults. They are nicknamed leatherwings because of their soft, cloth-like wing covers, which when brightly colored are reminiscent of uniforms.
The beetles are elongate, soft-bodied and about 1.3 cm (1/2 inch) long. Colors vary from yellow to red with brown or black wings or trim. Soldier beetles resemble lightning bugs but do not have light-producing organs.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.