Belum Valley Violin Beetle

If you travel up north to Sungai Kejar in Royal Belum, Belum Valley, one of the commonly found insect at the campsite are the Violin beetle. They are ground beetles in the subfamily of Lebiinae from family of Carabidae and order of Coleoptera. They live between layers of bracket fungi. Ground beetles are a large, cosmopolitan family of beetles, Carabidae, with more than 40,000 species worldwide.

Bracket fungi often grow in semi-circular shapes, looking like shelving growing out of trees or wood. They can be parasitic, saprotrophic, or both. One of the more common genera, Ganoderma, can grow large thick shelves that may contribute to the death of the tree, and then feed off the wood for years after. Their hardiness means they are very resilient and can live for quite a long time, with many species even developing beautiful multi-coloured circles of colour that are actually annual growth rings.

Not so much information available on these Violin Beetles, other than it was found in 1825 and was made as pictures on stamp in several countries. More information of  this Violin Beetle can be found here.

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