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Superregnum: Eukaryota
Cladus: Unikonta
Cladus: Opisthokonta
Cladus: Holozoa
Regnum: Animalia
Subregnum: Eumetazoa
Cladus: Bilateria
Cladus: Nephrozoa
Cladus: Protostomia
Cladus: Ecdysozoa
Cladus: Panarthropoda
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Hexapoda
Classis: Insecta
Cladus: Dicondylia
Subclassis: Pterygota
Cladus: Metapterygota
Infraclassis: Neoptera
Cladus: Eumetabola
Cladus: Endopterygota
Superordo: Coleopterida
Ordo: Coleoptera
Subordo: Polyphaga
Infraordo: Cucujiformia
Cladus: Phytophaga
Superfamilia: Chrysomeloidea

Familia: Cerambycidae
Subfamilia: Prioninae
Tribus: Macrodontiini
Genus: Acanthinodera
Species: A. cumingii

Acanthinodera Hope, 1835

Type species: Prionus cumingii Hope, 1835 = Acanthinodera cumingii (Hope, 1833)


Acanthinoderus Agassiz, 1846
Amallopodes Lequien, 1833
Malloderes Dupont, 1835

Primary references

Hope, F.W. 1835. Characters and descriptions of several new genera and species of Coleopterous insects. Transactions of the Zoological Society of London 1(2): 91–112. BHL Reference page. : 106


Acanthinodera – Taxon details on Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF).

Acanthinodera is a genus of longhorned beetles in the family Cerambycidae.[1] It is monotypic, being represented by the single species Acanthinodera cumingii.[2] It is the largest species of beetle in Chile.[3] The beetle is endemic to central Chile and can be found from IV Coquimbo Region to IX La Araucanía Region.

The male (left) is smaller and lighter colored than the female.

The species has a particularly marked sexual dimorphism,[4] which originally led naturalists to classify the male and female as distinct species. The male measures 5–6 cm, is light brown and furry. The female is black and measures between 8–9 cm on average, although specimens exceeding 12 cm in length have also been found. The male is nocturnal and can fly, but the female is diurnal and does not fly.[5]

The insects produce a hissing sound when disturbed that they generate by rubbing their rear legs along the edge of the wing covers. Although they are slow-moving and non-aggressive, they can deliver a powerful bite if provoked. Their legs are powerful and tipped with large claws, they are very difficult to remove from surfaces on which they can gain good purchase; this includes tree bark, clothes and skin.

The species is endemic to Chile, and can be found from the south of the Region of Coquimbo to the Malleco Province in the Region of Araucanía. It can be found from sea level to the Precordillera hills.[6]
Life cycle

The life cycle of A. cumingii has been little studied. The females lay more than 100 white eggs resembling grains of rice in the dry trunks of trees and in decomposing vegetation.[3] The length of time between eggs and adulthood can take six years, depending on humidity and food availability.[6] Larva can reach sizes as large as 13 cm in length.[4][7] For this reason the common name of the insect is "the mother of the snake" in Spanish.

The insect plays an important ecosystem role in decomposition of dead wood. The larval stage has been found living in approximately 30 species of trees, both indigenous and invasive. This includes Eucalyptus which is an invasive tree in Chile.[6]

The insects are occasionally preyed upon by mammalian carnivores, such as foxes. However, the strong jaws of the insect, used for eating wood, may provide a defense.[5]

In its native habitat in Chile the insect is vulnerable to habitat destruction from logging and construction.[4] Due to its large size, the beetle is also vulnerable to being caught and killed by people, exacerbating the danger of extinction.

"Catalog of Life: Acanthinodera cummingi Gazulla & Ruíz, 1929". April 2015. Retrieved November 13, 2016.
Bezark, Larry G. A Photographic Catalog of the Cerambycidae of the World Archived 2013-08-27 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved on 22 May 2012.
"FICHA DE ANTECEDENTES DE ESPECIE: Acanthinodera cummingi" (PDF). 2016. Retrieved November 17, 2016.
"Madre de la Culebra". Archived from the original on July 1, 2017. Retrieved November 13, 2016.
Zúñiga-Reinoso, Álvaro; et al. (2016). "Acanthinodera cumingii (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae) in the diet of carnivores of the Nahuelbuta Mountain Area, south-central Chile". Journal of Entomology and Zoology Studies. 4: 696–698.
Fuentes Olivares, Pablo; Araneda Olivares, Cristóbal (2016). "Primer registro de larva de Acanthinodera cumingii (Hope, 1833) (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae) en el arbusto invasor Ulex europaeus L.". Biodiversity and Natural History. 2: 1–5.
Angulo, A (1974). "Endogamia, endemismo y teratología en insectos". Boletín de la Sociedad de Biología de Concepción. 47: 297–301.

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