GROUND BEETLES (Also known as SIDEWALK CARABID)
Pterostichus melanarius

Bug Index

                    

 Assassin Bug

Bigeyed Bug

Firefly

Bumblebee

Damselfly

Dragonfly

Giant Diving Beetle

Giant Stoneflies

Giant Water Bug

Ground Beetles

Honey Bee

Lacewings

Ladybird Beetle

Mealybug-Destroyers 

Millipede

Pirate Bugs

Praying Mantid

Predatory Mites

Rove Beetles

Sowbug

Syphid Fly

Tachnid Fly

Yellow Jacket

                  

The Sidewalk Carabid is a ground beetle, which is a member of the family that has almost 2200 species in the United States and throughout the world. The Sidewalk Carabid was chosen to represent the family simply because it is the most commonly encountered species in residential areas. These are good bugs. They feed on any kind of ground-inhabiting larvae and insect eggs. They live in ground covers and in compost piles. In the garden they prefer to eat cut worms, so gardeners love to see these beetles take up residence. 

Ground beetles range in size from about 2 mm to 25 mm (1/8 inch to 1 inch). Most tend to be black, but there are a wide variety of colors represented in the various species. Some are dark brown and they sometimes have a bronze or green metallic sheen. The Sidewalk Carabid is all shiny black and about 15 mm long. These are robust beetles with proportionately large powerful jaws.

Ground beetles are found everywhere in the United States, Canada, and throughout the world . The Sidewalk Carabid is largely restricted to the larger towns and cities, but has been gradually working its way into the countryside. It is an introduced species, originally coming from Europe.

Habitat and habits: Because the adults live for a long time, this species is found throughout the summer. The Sidewalk Carabid lives in cities and suburbs often hiding under rocks and stones. At times, when it is wandering around, it takes the path of least resistance - it walks right down a sidewalk. Like all ground beetles it is a predator, and is beneficial becasue it eats many insect pests. Most ground beetles move fairly quickly and it is not uncommon for them to get into homes, either by sneaking in a door or finding a crack in the foundation.

Comments: People are often concerned when these beetles get into the house. Remember that these are predatory beetles and as a result are the good guys. Most houses probably do not have enough invertebrates to keep a ground beetle alive, and it is usually best just to move the beetle outside.