Here is a ferocious looking dogbane beetle who sat on the edge of the deck rail watching me work this past Saturday. I figure if he got to sit there and make fun of me then I had every right to get a few close-up pictures. Of course, he reared up and tried to scare me away. However, I was working to finish an earlier job on the floor around the door that Charlotte expected me to have done. I am more scared of her than I am of any dogbane beetle. Needless to say, his flailing had no impact on my activity.
This beetle’s colors shine in the sunlight. He is an iridescent blue-green with a metallic copper, golden or crimson shine. We have only seen a couple of these around here. Reportedly, they eat dogbane and milkweed. But I saw one last week chewing on petunia petals. You can see two sets on pincers around his mouth where he pulls the petal material apart. These beetles grow to a little less than half an inch in length and they have a distinctly oval shape.