Sunday, August 3, 2008

Squish It or Let It Go??

Warning: If you hate big beetles, you will want to skip today's post.... I'll put this sunflower picture right at the top to take up space so there's no chance you will get an accidental look at the giant beetle.

So here's the scenario (and I'm sure you've had similar situations at your house)......I hear Mr. Johnson come into the basement and he hollers at me, "Ruth, c'mere"

Ruth: What?

Mr. J: Just c'mere!

Ruth: I can't (I was coloring my hair......)

Mr. J: Come see this big beetle! (he knew that would get me)

Ruth: Where? in the basement?

Mr. J: Yeah, come see it before I squish it!

Ruth: NOOOO.....DON'T SQUISH IT, I'll be there in a second (as I rush to grab my camera)

Once in a while get those black ground beetles in the basement and I think he's seen those before, so I figured this must be a really outstanding beetle if he wanted me to come and see it that much. What do you think?

It was HUGE! At least 1 inch long and 1/2 inch wide! This was definitely the biggest beetle EVER in our basement.

I took some pictures and convinced him to "just let it go in the garden" instead of killing it. After reviewing the photos against my field guide, I'm reasonably certain this is a Hermit Flower Beetle. They're in the Flower Scarab beetle family. According to my field guide the larvae develop in rotting wood of dead or dying hardwoods, so how it ended up in my basement is a mystery. (Here's another picture I found by googling Hermit Flower Beetle for comparison.)


nina said...

Oh, Ruthie,
Have I got one for you!
We were hiking and I stopped because I heard it walking! Actually heard it rustling along besdie the if I can just figure out what it is, I'll manage to get a post up for it! :-(

Glad you relocated it--I figure there's a job for everybody out there--composting, .....

Lynne said...

EEek! I think you could put a saddle on that thing and offer rides in your driveway!
Glad Mr. Johnson put it outside.

RuthieJ said...

Hi Nina,
Yikes, that must have been 1 huge beetle! I can't wait to see what you find out.
I would much rather relocate than kill a beetle like this--I can't stand the sound of them being crunched!

LOL Lynne, it definitely was HUGE and will be much happier outside than in my basement.

Mary said...

Yep. Definitely the largest beetle I've ever seen! Glad you set it free.

What I think is so funny is that Mr. Johnson called for you... Just c'mere!

I've heard the same excited call from Mr. Ferracci when I was in disposed before...usually for a snake or lizard!



Anonymous said...

I have never seen a beetle that big, a cockroach yes, but never a beetle. Do you remember going to Philip and Armida's wedding and staying in that new motel in Louisiana? Your brother David had to put on his boots to kill that huge cockroach in the bathroom. It was at least 2 ins if not 3 ins long and way to wide, it nearly freaked me out, and it was a lot wider and longer after David squished it. They were all over in Louisiana.

Jayne said...

Husband did the same to me yesterday, "Uh, honey, I need a broom or something!" What? Down in the basement I went, and there was a sweet blue tailed skink he was cornering. I yelled, "It's just a lizard, don't kill it!" He'd already "subdued" it with some ant spray dang it! I went to get a box and put it in front of him, and he of course, politely crawled into it to hide and I took him outside to release him. I was mad at him for possibly killing it, but he was freaked it was in the basement. Sissy! :c) Cool huge beetle!

Anonymous said...

I loved all the blogs you got, we each have one to tell you about. Lynn had the best one about the saddle, LOL.


Julie said...

LOL! So, how big was it? Can you compare it to something, a quarter or a dollar coin or a Big Mac?!? LOL
My mother walked into the kitchen yesterday and there was a wolf spider, not even a huge one, walking along the cabinet. She's still talking about it, telling the dogs even that there was a BIG spider in the kitchen! Dad took it outside too, but she wanted to kill it! LOL

Meggie said...

Gosh Ruthie! You must have a field guide for just about every critter there is. My beetles here in PA look like that but are not that big. Lucky you!

RuthieJ said...

Hi Mare,
Aren't those spousal units a riot? There's always a lot of heavy sighing and eye-rolling on my part when he hollers "just c'mere". Sometimes it's for something good, but usually it's just to create another task for me!

Hi Mom,
I missed that cockroach in Louisiana, but I think that's A-OK! If it's not a grasshopper or butterfly, any bug larger than 2 inches is way too big for me to look at (in real life anyway)!

Oh Jayne, poor skink! Do you think it will make it? And how big do you suppose the skink is: 4 inches or so? (big enough to terrorize a grown man, I guess) ;-)

Hi Mom,
The comments are definitely the best part of almost any blog post, I think.

Hi Julie,
Probably only about quarter-sized.
Now if I saw a quarter-sized spider, that would be a different story! They move a lot faster than this beetle was moving.

RuthieJ said...

Hi Meggie,
A plethora of field guides! You would be surprised at all the different things there are field guides for! I need to get a different desk because they don't all fit on one shelf anymore.

Marsha said...

Now that's a big beetle!

Lisa at Greenbow said...

Let it go, let it go... I am so glad you let it go. Such a handsome creature.