Oxycopis sp.

Pollen-feeding Beetle / False Blister Beetle

Oxycopis sp., False Blister Beetle, image from Martinique


Family: Oedemeridae

Subfamily: Oedemerinae

Length: beetle in photo 7.3 mm


Oxycopis (13 species) is the most common genus of False Blister Beetles in the West Indies; it is also found in Central America and in the southeastern United States. Among the key traits are: antennae with 11 elongated segments; apical segment of the maxillary palpus triangular; and five abdominal segments visible ventrally. Adults feed on flowers and are attracted to lights; larvae develop in the soil. Human contact with these beetles can cause blistering of the skin.

Photo location: Presqu’île de la Caravelle, Martinique.

Determined by Dr. Stewart Peck, Carleton University, and Dr. Michael A. Ivie, Montana State University.

American Insects site