Posted on 12/26/2012

Photo taken on December 24, 2012

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Temognatha lessonii, PL2464

Temognatha lessonii, PL2464
Adelaide, 22 Dec 2012.

I found this large (34 mm long) jewel beetle dead on the ground, undamaged and quite soft and fresh, with the ovipositor extended. A rarely collected species in SA, which visits the canopies of flowering Eucalypts in grassy woodlands. An amazing Christmas present!

Temognatha lessonii is a rarely collected species. Amongst the small number of collections from South Australia are records from Blackwood, Aldinga Scrub, Urrbrae and Wirrabara, all areas in which Grey Box (Eucalyptus microcarpa) Woodlands occur. Like most of it congeners, it is likely to spend its larval stages as a borer in the wood of Eucalypts with the adults emerging in summer to feed on nectar in the blossoms. In the case of this species this would undoubtedly include Grey Box (Eucalyptus microcarpa) which begins its flowering in late summer.

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