Poecilus chalcites

Woodland Ground Beetle
Poecilus chalcites

Identification:

Ground Beetle Poecilus chalcites came to moth lights, July 24, 2011 - photo 2 of 2. Wheatley, Ontario.
Ground Beetle Poecilus chalcites came to moth lights, July 24, 2011 – photo 2 of 2. Wheatley, Ontario.

Head: Metallic bronze-green, sometimes almost black, smooth and shiny. Whiskers (palpi) brownish-black.
Antenna: First 3 segments brownish-yellow with darker streaks, rest of antenna dark brown.
Thorax (Pronotum): Metallic bronze-green, sometimes almost black, smooth and shiny, squarish. Indented line down middle of thorax. Side margins slightly rounded with a very tiny bead of a rim. Lower margin slightly turned-in at side edges.
Wings (Elytra): Metallic bronze-green, sometimes almost black, shiny. About 8 or 9 indented lines down each wing.  Tip blunt, rounded.
Legs: Black; thighs thicker, rest of legs thin and long. Male front feet have pads on underside, not very large.
Abdomen: Underside black.

Similar Species:
Poecilus lucublandus is metallic green and identical, except it has a wide rim or shelf on thorax sides.
Anisodactylus laetus is also metallic green, thorax not constricted at lower margin and legs are reddish-brown.
Harpalus affinis is also metallic green, thorax not constricted at lower margin, and has entirely orange-red legs.

Size: 10 to 13 mm.

Habitat: Crop fields like soybean, alfalfa and corn; wetland edges. Prefers moist soils.

Food: Cutworm moth larvae, beetle eggs and other small insects.

Flight Time: May to September.

Life Cycle: Mating in May. Over-winters as an adult, found under stones and dead leaves. Active at night, attracted to lights. Larvae are cannibalistic, need moist soil for survival.

Comments: Essex County – Point Pelee National Park and Lake Erie Islands. Kent County – Rondeau Provincial Park. Also Bruce Peninsula.

For information on synonyms, references and type specimens see next page