Thursday, July 3, 2008

Beach Lucanid?

During our trip up the coast, we stumbled upon a really interesting Lucanid at one of the beaches we visited. This is Platyceropsis keeni. My friend and I had been hunting for this creature for a couple of days. This curious "stag" beetle is known to occur along the coast of Northern California all the way up to British Columbia under driftwood during the Spring months. We had visited a couple beaches in Northern California, each with lots of driftwood along the coast and flipped over hundred of logs but were not successful in finding any. We then headed into Oregon and pulled off at a nice looking beach south of Gold Beach. After flipping over a couple logs, we finally found a dead one. We dashed out to the coast and started flipping over every piece of driftwood we could find but could not find any live specimens... were we too late?

After a while, I had gotten bored/given up and headed to the valley behind the first row of dunes to look for Tenebrionids in the drier sand. Here I found a nice pile of drier driftwood and started flipping them over to find Phaleromella, a Teneb I hadn't encountered before. Then I saw this guy. A live Platyceropsis keeni digging through the sand! Elated, I flipped over more logs and found a couple more, and also the larvae, which interestingly seems to live in the sand right under driftwood as well. In another patch of driftwood in this area behind the first row of dunes, we found more live adults. While its hard to speculate from just one collecting event, it was interesting that all our effort flipping logs right on the coast resulted in zero specimens, while they were fairly common in this particular microhabitat.

1 comment:

Al Allen said...

Might you be interested to exchange

Albert Allen