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Calosoma sycophanta

Calosoma sycophanta

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: Adephaga

Familia: Carabidae
Subfamilia: Carabinae
Tribus: Carabini
Subtribus: Calosomatina
Genus: Calosoma
Subgenus: Calosoma (Calosoma)
Species: Calosoma sycophanta

Calosoma sycophanta (Linnaeus, 1758)

Carabus sycophanta Linnaeus, 1758

Calosoma sycophanta

Primary references

Linnaeus, C. 1758. Systema Naturae per regna tria naturæ, secundum classes, ordines, genera, species, cum characteribus, differentiis, synonymis, locis, Tomus I. Editio decima, reformata. Holmiæ: impensis direct. Laurentii Salvii. i–ii, 1–824 pp DOI: 10.5962/bhl.title.542: 414. Reference page.


Calosoma sycophanta Taxon details on Fauna Europaea
Calosoma sycophanta (Linnaeus, 1758)
Calosoma sycophanta in Red Data book of Russia
ZooBank: BB650558-7DCE-42A5-A974-7E065CEA414F

Vernacular names
беларуская: Красацел пахучы
čeština: Krajník pižmový
Deutsch: Großer Puppenräuber
English: Fiery Searcher
français: Calosome sycophante
magyar: Aranyos bábrabló
Nederlands: Grote poppenrover
polski: Tęcznik liszkarz
русский: Пахучий красотел
slovenčina: Húseničiar pižmový

Calosoma sycophanta, the forest caterpillar hunter, is a species of ground beetle belonging to the family Carabidae.
Calosoma sycophanta, male and female. Mounted specimen

Subspecies and varietas

Calosoma sycophanta var. severum Chaudoir, 1850
Calosoma sycophanta var. nigrocyaneum Letzner, 1850
Calosoma sycophanta var. marginatum Letzner, 1850
Calosoma sycophanta var. azureum Letzner, 1850
Calosoma sycophanta var. purpureoaureum Letzner, 1850
Calosoma sycophanta var. cupreum Letzner, 1850
Callipara sycophanta rapax Motschoulsky, 1865
Calosoma sycophanta var. smaragdinum Rossi, 1882
Calosoma sycophanta var. habelmanni Schilsky, 1888
Calosoma sycophanta var. purpuripenne Reitter, 1891
Calosoma sycophanta ab. corvinum Heller, 1897
Calosoma sycophanta ab. anthracinum Houlbert, 1907
Calosoma sycophanta prasinum Lapouge, 1907
Calosoma sycophanta ab. solinfectum Jänichen, 1914
Calosoma sycophanta var. lapougei Breuning, 1927
Calosoma (Callipara) sycophanta, Lapouge, 1932
Calosoma sycophanta nigrosuturale Jaquet, 1930
Calosoma sycophanta nigroaeneum Polentz, 1937
Calosoma (Calosoma) sycophanta, Jeannel, 1940
Calosoma (Calosoma) sycophanta, Gidaspow, 1959
Calosoma (Calosoma) sycophanta, Deuve, 1997
Calosoma (Calosoma) sycophanta, Erwin, 2007


Calosoma sycophanta can reach a length of about 21–35 millimetres (0.83–1.38 in). This large ground beetle has characteristic metallic bright green elytra, while scutellum is metallic bluish. The head is black. These colors have iridescent shades that change (green, blue, bronze, copper, gold black) according to the direction and quality of light. Pronotum is transverse shaped, posteriorly sharply narrowed, wrinkled and punctured. Elytra are flattened with clearly visible punctures in the striae.[2]

This ground beetle is a voracious consumer of caterpillars (especially Lymantria dispar, Thaumetopoea processionea, Thaumetopoea pityocampa and Euproctis chrysorrhoea) during both its larval stage and as an adult.[3][4][5][6]

As a predator the species has been researched for the effect of its predation upon the caterpillars with microsporidian pathogens, finding a preference for Vairimorpha disparis infected larva.[7]

This species is native to Europe. It is present in most European countries, in the eastern Palearctic realm, in the Nearctic realm, in the Near East, and in North Africa.[8] In 1905 it was imported to New England for control of the gypsy moth.[3]

Adult of Calosoma sycophanta preying on a caterpillar of Lymantria dispar

Calosoma sycophanta, larva

Calosoma sycophanta larva eating a Lymantria dispar larva

Calosoma sycophanta, pupa


Calosoma of the world
Ground Beetles Archived 2009-05-14 at the Wayback Machine, Susan Mahr, University of Wisconsin–Madison]
Hermann Burmeister Anatomical Observations upon the Larva of Calosoma sycophanta
Cookies on Invasive Species Compendium
Arthur V. Evans The Forest Caterpillar Hunter, Calosoma sycophanta
Goertz, D.; Hoch, G. (2013). "Influence of the forest caterpillar hunter Calosoma sycophanta on the transmission of microsporidia in larvae of the gypsy moth Lymantria dispar". Agricultural and Forest Entomology. 15 (2): 178–186. doi:10.1111/afe.12000. PMC 3688323. PMID 23794950.
Fauna Europaea

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