Head: Entirely reddish-orange, smooth and shiny. Palpi reddish-orange.
Antenna: Dark reddish-brown, first 3 segments pale.
Thorax (Pronotum): Twice as wide as long, reddish-orange. Distinct middle indented line. Sides rounded with a somewhat lighter colored rim or shelf. Underside pale yellowish.
Wings (Elytra): Deep metallic blue, deeply indented lines and ridges (striae). Tips squared, abdomen usually protruding.
Legs: Dark reddish-orange. Males have pads on underside of front feet.
Abdomen: Black, including underside.
Similar Species: Lebia atriventris has faint indented lines (striae) on wings, and is much smaller (5 to 8 mm). Chlaenius nemoralis is much larger (15 mm), head and thorax bronze.
Size: 8 to 11 mm.
Habitat: Forest edges and cultivated potato fields. Often found on Horse Nettle Solarium carolinense.
Food: Adults prefers the eggs and larvae of Colorado Potato Beetles Leptinotarsa decemlineata. Feeds on other small insects.
Flight Time: June and July; again in September.
Life Cycle: Females can produce over 1,000 eggs. Eggs are laid singly in moist soil and covered with a secretion and particles of soil. Hatch about 12 days later and feed only on the Colorado Potato Beetle pupa. Becomes an adult in about 20 days. Adults overwinter under stones and logs. Attracted to lights.
Comments: Essex County – Point Pelee National Park. Kent County – Rondeau Provincial Park.
For information on synonyms, references and type specimens see next page