Atalantycha bilineata

Two-Lined Soldier Beetle

Ancistronycha bilineata image, Two-lined Soldier Beetle

Family: Cantharidae

Subfamily: Cantharinae

Length: 6-8 mm


Look for this species in April or May. It's among the first adult Soldier Beetles to be seen after winter gives way to spring. Two-Lined Soldier Beetles are found on foliage and flowers, and may also be attracted to lights. For a few days they may seem ubiquitous.

Among the species identification marks: Black elytra with some light-colored pubescence. The pronotum is reddish with two broad black marks. The head is reddish with a black bar that seems to run between the two eyes. The legs are partly black, partly reddish.

In a 2005 article in Coleopterists Bulletin, Sergey Kazantsev erected a new genus, Atalantycha, and placed this species in it, hence the new name Atalantycha bilineata, replacing Ancistronycha bilineata. Kazantsev notes that pronotum and the tarsal claws of Atalantycha resemble those in the genus Rhaxonycha, but that the genital characteristics of Atalantycha resemble those of Cantharis.

Insects of West Virginia