K.N.A. Alexander

with additions from P.A. Gainey; water beetles by A.P. Foster, updated by D.T. Bilton

Beetle recording has a long history in Cornwall, with specialist entomologists resident in the area for long periods, e.g. J.H. Keys of Plymouth at the turn of the twentieth century and R.T. Bannister of Penzance more recently, and its heritage of rare species has attracted people from all over Britain. The fauna is therefore reasonably well known, although the occasional species is still added to the Cornish list, particularly species associated with one of Cornwall’s most neglected habitats - pasture-woodlands and historic parks (for example, see Alexander, 1991a). No modern review of Cornwall’s beetle fauna is however available.

Cornwall is most famous for its weevils (Curculionidae) which include the western oceanic Cathormiocerus genus (on sea cliffs, especially on the West Lizard) and Anchonidium unguiculare (in Helford Woods) for which Cornwall is of international importance. The Lizard has long been known as the place for the click beetle Cardiophorus vestigialis (Elateridae) and is also well-known for its rare rove beetles (Staphylinidae).

The key management issues are:

Distributional and ecological information is heavily drawn from A review of the scarce and threatened Coleoptera of Great Britain, Parts 1 & 2 (Hyman & Parsons, 1992 and 1994). Almost full coverage is given for British RDB and Nationally Scarce (Notable A) species, while Nationally Scarce (Notable B) species are only included in full account form (section 2) where they are known to be rare in Cornwall. Notable species, which have been recorded in Cornwall since 1970, have been fully listed in section 3. A few Notable A species have been excluded due to their being widespread in Cornwall and under no particular threat. Cornwall Scarce (CS) species are also included where particularly significant (section 4). The water beetle categories follow those provided by G.N. Foster in Hyman & Parsons (1992).

1. RDB Coleoptera

Amara famelica a ground beetle

Carabus intricatus Blue Ground Beetle

Cicindela hybrida A tiger beetle

Dromius quadrisignatus A ground beetle

Dromius vectensis A ground beetle

Harpalus honestus A ground beetle

Harpalus melancholicus A ground beetle

Ophonus puncticollis A ground beetle

Ophonus sabulicola A ground beetle

Lebia cruxminor A ground beetle

Lionychus quadrillum A ground beetle

Poecilus kugelanni A ground beetle

Graptodytes flavipes A water beetle

Agabus brunneus A water beetle

Hydaticus transversalis A diving beetle

Dytiscus dimidiatus A great diving beetle

Hydrochus nitidicollis A water beetle

Ochthebius poweri A water beetle

Hydraena pygmaea A water beetle

Dryops striatellus A water beetle

Margarinotus obscurus A hister beetle

Saprinus virescens A hister beetle

Silpha obscura A carrion beetle

Stenichnus godarti A stone beetle

Stenichnus poweri A stone beetle

Actocharis readingi A rove beetle

Arena tabida A rove beetle

Astenus procerus A rove beetle

Astenus serpentinus A rove beetle

Atheta laevicauda A rove beetle

Halobrecta princeps A rove beetle

Lathrobium rufonitidum A rove beetle

Lomechusa paradoxa A rove beetle

Oxytelus piceus A rove beetle

Phytosus nigriventris A rove beetle

Scopaeus ryei A rove beetle

Sunius bicolor A rove beetle

Onthophagus fracticornis A scarab beetle

Brindalus porcicollis A scarab beetle

Cardiophorus vestigialis A click beetle

Microrhagus pygmaeus A false click beetle

Hippodamia tredecimpunctata A ladybird

Atomaria scutellaris A silken fungus beetle

Langelandia anophthalmia A cylindrical bark beetle

Hypulus quercinus A false darkling beetle

Mordellistena neuwaldeggiana A tumbling flower beetle

Mordellistena parvula A tumbling flower beetle

Meloe brevicollis An oil beetle

Gracilia minuta A long horn beetle

Cassida nebulosa A tortoise beetle

Macroplea appendiculata A reed beetle

Ochrosis ventralis A flea beetle

Psylliodes hyoscyami Henbane Flea Beetle

Melanapion minimum A weevil

Apion rubiginosum A weevil

Anchonidium unguiculare A ground weevil

Anthonomus rufus A weevil

Bagous collignensis A weevil

Barypeithes pyrenaeus A ground weevil

Cathormiocerus attaphilus A ground weevil

Cathormiocerus maritimus A ground weevil

Cathormiocerus myrmecophilus A ground weevil

Ceutorhynchus parvulus A weevil

Glocianus pilosellus A weevil

Coniocleonus nebulosus A weevil

Cleopomiarus micros A weevil

Cleopomiarus plantarum A weevil

Orchestes testaceus A flea weevil

2. Nationally Scarce Coleoptera

Acupalpus flavicollis A ground beetle

Agonum sexpunctatum A ground beetle

Amara nitida A ground beetle

Badister peltatus A ground beetle

Bembidion nigropiceum A ground beetle

Bradycellus distinctus A ground beetle

Dyschirius nitidus A ground beetle

Harpalus tenebrosus A ground beetle

Ophonus ardosiacus A ground beetle

Ophonus melletii A ground beetle

Ophonus punctatulus A ground beetle

Masoreus wetterhalli A ground beetle

Nebria complanata A ground beetle

Pterostichus aethiops A ground beetle

Stenolophus skrimshiranus A ground beetle

Tachyporus formosus A rove beetle

Lucanus cervus The Stag Beetle

Amphimallon ochraceus A chafer

Clambus nigrellus A clambid beetle

Agrilus laticornis A jewel beetle

Aphanisticus pusillus A jewel beetle

Athous campyloides A click beetle

Ampedus elongantulus A click beetle

Calambus bipustulatus A click beetle

Melasis buprestoides A false click beetle

Platycis minutus A net-winged beetle

Thymalus limbatus A peltid beetle

Aplocnemus nigricornis A malachite beetle

Phloeophilus edwardsii A malachite beetle

Epuraea distincta A sap beetle

Rhizophagus nitidulus A rhizophagid beetle

Rhizophagus picipes A rhizophagid beetle

Platynaspis luteorubra A ladybird

Mycetophagus piceus A hairy fungus beetle

Mycetophagus quadriguttatus A hairy fungus beetle

Melandrya caraboides A false darkling beetle

Prionus coriarius Sawyer Beetle

Leptura aurulenta Hornet Beetle

Aphthona nigriceps A flea beetle

Cassida hemisphaerica A tortoise beetle

Chrysolina graminis A leaf beetle

Cryptocephalus frontalis A leaf beetle

Donacia dentata A reed beetle

Donacia sparganii A reed beetle

Longitarsus agilis A flea beetle

Longitarsus obliteratoides A flea beetle

Longitarsus rutilus A flea beetle

Mantura chrysanthemi A flea beetle

Phyllotreta striolata Striped Turnip Flea Beetle

Choragus sheppardi A fungus weevil

Perapion affine A weevil

Catapion curtisi A weevil

Protapion laevicolle A weevil

Protapion schoenherri A weevil

Melanobaris laticollis A weevil

Ceutorhynchus atomus A weevil

Gymnetron rostellum A weevil

Mogulones euphorbiae A weevil

Rhinocyllus conicus A weevil

Sibinia sodalis A weevil

Sirocalodes quercicola A weevil

Trachyphloeus rectus A ground weevil

Trichosirocalus horridus A weevil

3. A list of Notable (N), Notable A (NA), Notable B (NB) and Insufficiently Known (RDBK) terrestrial beetle species not mentioned in the main text but recorded in Cornwall since 1970.

The status is as is given in Hyman & Parsons (1992 and 1994) and the taxonomy as in Duff (2008).

Apionidae (Weevils)

Aizobius sedi (Germar) VC1, VC2 NB

Catapion pubescens (Kirby) VC1 NB

Cyanapion gyllenhalii (Kirby) VC1 NB

Diplapion stolidum (Germar) VC1 NB

Protapion dissimile (Germar) VC1 NB

Squamapion vicinum (Kirby) VC1 NB

Cantharidae (Soldier Beetles)

Malthinus balteatus Suffrian VC1, VC2 NB

Malthodes guttifer Kiesenwetter VC2 NB

Rhagonycha translucida (Krynicki) VC1, VC2 NB

Carabidae (Ground Beetles)

Acupalpus exiguus Dejean VC1 NB

Aepus marinus (Ström) VC1, VC2 NB

Aepus robinii (Laboulbène) VC1, VC2 NB

Agonum nigrum Dejean VC2 NB

Amara equestris (Duftschmid) VC1 NB

Amara fulva (Müeller, O.F.) VC1 NB

Amara lucida (Duftschmid) VC1 NB

Badister dilatatus Chaudoir VC1 NB

Badister unipustulatus Bonelli VC1 NB

Bembidion gilvipes Sturm VC1 NB

Bembidion pallidipenne (Illiger) VC1, VC2 NB

Chlaenius nigricornis (Fabricius) VC1, VC2 NB

Cillenus lateralis Samouelle VC1, VC2 NB

Demetrias monostigma Samouelle VC1 NB

Dicheirotrichus obsoletus (Dejean) VC1 NB

Elaphropus parvulus (Dejean) VC2 NB

Elaphrus uliginosus Fabricius VC1 NB

Harpalus serripes (Quensel in Schönherr) VC1 NB

Lebia chlorocephala (Hoffmann) VC1 NB

Pterostichus gracilis (Dejean) VC1 NB

Pterostichus longicollis (Duftschmid) IOS NB

Pterostichus oblongopunctatus (Fabricius) IOS NB

Trechus fulvus Dejean IOS NB

Cerambycidae (Long-horn Beetles)

Aromia moschata (Linnaeus) VC1, VC2 NB

Phytoecia cylindrica (Linnaeus) VC2 NB

Chrysomelidae (Leaf Beetles)

Altica ericeti (Allard) VC1 NB

Apteropeda globosa (Illiger) VC2 NB

Bruchus atomarius (Linnaeus) VC1 NB

Calomicrus circumfusus (Marsham) VC1, VC2 NA

Cassida nobuilis Linnaeus IOS, VC1, VC2 NB

Cassida prasina Illiger VC1 NB

Chrysolina haemoptera (Linnaeus) VC1, VC2 NB

Chrysolina marginata (Linnaeus) VC2 NA

Cryptocephalus aureolus Suffrian VC1, VC2 NB

Donacia thalassina Germar VC1 NB

Longitarsus anchusae (Paykull) VC1 NB

Longitarsus tabidus (Fabricius) VC1 NB

Lythraria salicariae (Paykull) VC1, VC2 NB

Mantura rustica (Linnaeus) VC1 NB

Phaedon concinuus Stephens VC1 NB

Phyllotreta cruciferae (Goeze) VC1, VC2 NB

Psylliodes chalcomara (Illiger) VC1 NB

Coccinellidae (Ladybirds)

Hippodamia variegata (Goeze) VC1, VC2 NB

Hyperaspis pseudopustulata Mulsant VC1 NB


Atomaria atra (Herbst.) VC1 N

Atomaria nigriventris Stephens VC1 N

Curculionidae (Weevils)

Acalles ptinoides (Marsham) VC1, VC2 NB

Acalyptus carpini (Fabricius) VC1 NB

Anthonomus ulmi (De Geer) VC1 NB

Barypeithes sulcifrons (Bohemen) VC1, VC2 NB

Caenopsis fissirostris (Walton) VC1 NB

Calosirus terminatus (Herbst.) VC1, VC2 NB

Ceutorhynchus constrichus (Marsham) VC1 NB

Ceutorhynchus rapae Gyllenhal VC1, VC2 NB

Ceutorhynchus resedae (Marsham) VC1 NB

Coeliodes transversealbofasciatus (Goeze) VC2 NB

Cryptorhynchus lapathi (Linnaeus) VC2 NB

Curculio betulae (Stephens) VC1, VC2 NB

Drupenatus nasturtii (Germar) VC1, VC2 NB

Glocianus punctiger (Gyllenhal) VC1, VC2 NB

Gymnetron veronicae (Germar) VC2 NB

Hypera fuscocinerea (Marsham) VC2 NB

Kissophagus hederae (Schmitt) VC1, VC2 NB

Kyklioacalles roboris (Curtis) VC1, VC2 NB

Larinus planus (Fabricius) VC1, VC2 NB

Liparus coronatus (Goeze) VC1 NB

Mecinus circulatus (Marsham) VC1 NB

Microplontus campestris (Gyllenhal) VC1, VC2 NB

Mogulones geographicus (Goeze) VC1 NB

Neliocarus faber (Herbst.) VC1 NB

Orthochaetes insignis (Aubé) VC1, VC2 NB

Orthochaetes setiger (Beck) VC1 NB

Pelenomus canaliculatus (Fåhraeus) VC1 NB

Pelenomus comari (Herbst.) VC2 NB

Pelenomus waltoni (Boheman) VC1, VC2 NB

Phytobius leucogaster (Marsham) VC1 NB

Polydrusus confluens Stephens VC1, VC2 NB

Pselactus spadix (Herbst.) VC1 NB

Rhopalomesites tardyi (Curtis) VC1, VC2 NB

Sibinia primita (Herbst.) VC1, VC2 NB

Sirocalodes mixtus (Mulsant & Rey) VC1, VC2 NB

Sitona waterhousei Walton VC1, VC2 NB

Smicronyx jungermanniae (Reich) VC1, VC2 NB

Trachyphloeus asperatus Boheman VC1 NB

Tychius schneideri (Herbst.) VC1, VC2 NB

Tychius squamulatus Gyllenhal VC1 NB


Dasytes plumbeus (Müller, O.F.) VC1 NB

Dasytes virens (Marsham) VC1 NB

Dolichosoma lineare (Rossi) VC2 NB


Geotrupes mutator (Marsham) VC2 NB

Trypocopris vernalis (Linnaeus) VC1, VC2 NB


Hister bissexstriatus Fabricius VC2 NB

Hydrophilidae (Water Scavenger Beetles)

Cercyon nigriceps (Marsham) VC1 N

Cercyon depressus Stephens VC1 N

Cercyon obsoletus (Gyllenhal) VC1, VC2 N

Cryptopleurum crenatum (Kugelann) IOS N


Enicmus brevicornis (Mannerheim) VC1 N

Latridius consimilis Mannerheim VC2 N

Melandryidae (False Darkling Beetles)

Abdera flexuosa (Paykull) VC2 NB

Conopalpus testaceus (Olivier) VC1, VC2 NB

Nitidulidae (Sap Beetles)

Cryptarcha strigata (Fabricius) VC2 NB

Meligethes bidentatus Brisout de Barneville VC1 RDBK

Meligethes exilis Sturm VC1 N

Meligethes subrugosus (Gyllenhal) VC1 N

Meligethes umbrosus Sturm VC1 N


Oedemera femoralis (Olivier) VC2 NB


Platypus cylindrus (Fabricius) VC2 NB

Ptiliidae (Featherwing Beetles)

Ptinella denticollis (Fairmaire) VC1 N


Byctiscus betulae (Linnaeus) VC1 NB

Neocoenorrhinus interpunctatus (Stephens) VC1 NB

Scarabaeidae (Chafers, Dung Beetles, etc.)

Aphodius paykulli Bedel VC1, VC2 NB

Aphodius plagiatus (Linnaeus) VC1 NB

Onthophagus nuchicomis (Linnaeus) VC1 NA

Onthophagus vacca (Linnaeus) VC1 NB


Hydrocyphon deflexicollis (Müller, P.W.J.) VC2 NB


Trypodendron signatum (Fabricius) VC1, VC2 NB

Silphidae (Carrion Beetles)

Nicrophorus interruptus Stephens VC1, VC2 NB

Staphylinidae (Rove Beetles)

Aleochara moesta Gravenhorst VC1 RDBK

Bledius femoralis (Gyllenhal) VC1 NA

Calodera riparia Erichson VC1 N

Cypha discoidea (Erichson) VC1 NB

Dacrila fallax (Kraatz) VC1 N

Deleaster dichrous (Gravenhorst) VC2 NB

Erichsonius signaticornis (Mulsant & Rey) VC2 NB

Gabrius velox Sharp VC1 NB

Gyrohypnus atratus (Heer) VC2 NB

Gyrophaena lucidüla Erichson VC1 N

Gyrophaena poweri Crotch VC1 RDBK

Gyrophaena strictula Erichson VC1 N

Heterothops dissimilis (Gravenhorst) IOS, VC1 RDBK

Ilyobates nigricollis (Paykull) VC1 RDBK

Lathrobium zetterstedti Rye VC1 NB

Lesteva hanseni Lohse VC1 N

Medon apicalis (Kraatz) VC1 N

Megarthus hemipterus (Illiger) VC2 NA

Myllaena kraatzi Sharp VC1 N

Oligota apicata (Erichson) VC1 N

Omalium rugatum Mulsant & Rey VC1 N

Omalium rugulipenne Rye VC1 RDBK

Paederus fuscipes Curtis VC1 NB

Philonthus fumarius (Gravenhorst) VC1 NB

Quedius fulgidus (Fabricius) VC1 NB

Quedius invreae Gridelli VC2 NB

Quedius microps Gravenhorst VC1 NB

Sepedophilus pedicularis (Gravenhorst) VC1 N

Sepedophilus testaceus (Fabricius) VC1 N

Stenus ater Mannerheim VC1 NB

Stenus nigritulus Gyllenhal VC1 NB

Thinobius brevipennis Kiesenwetter VC1 RDBK

Zyras haworthi Stephens VC2 NA

Tenebrionidae (Darkling Beetles)

Crypticus quisquilius (Linnaeus) VC1 NB

Opatrum sabulosum (Linnaeus) VC1, VC2 NB

4. Locally Scarce Coleoptera

Abraeus perpusillus A hister beetle

Anisotoma humeralis A leiodid beetle

Quedius xanthopus A rove beetle

Epiphanis cornutus A false click beetle

Cantharis lateralis A soldier beetle

Malthodes dispar A soldier beetle

Malthodes mysticus A soldier beetle

Dorcatoma chrysomelina A wood decay beetle

Rhizophagus ferrugineus A rhizophagid beetle

Biphyllus lunatus A false hide beetle

Triplax aenea An erotylid beetle

Cerylon histeriodes A cerylonid beetle

Litargus connexus A hairy fungus beetle

Mycetophagus atomarius A hairy fungus beetle

Phyllobrotica quadrimaculata A leaf beetle

Exapion fuscirostre A weevil

Scolytus intricatus Oak Bark Beetle

Xyleborus saxeseni A bark beetle

5. Notable water beetles recorded in Cornwall since 1960

Stictonectes lepidus (Olivier) NB

Deronectes latus (Stephens) NB

Agabus biguttatus (Olivier) NB

Ilybius guttiger (Gyllenhal) NB

Rhantus grapii (Gyllenhal) NB

Rhantus suturalis (MacLeay) NB

Gyrinus urinator Illiger NB

Hydrochus angustatus Germar NB

Paracymus scutellaris (Rosenhauer) NB

Laccobius atrocephalus Reitter NB

Helochares punctatus Sharp NB

Enochrus affinis (Thunberg) NB

Enochrus bicolor (Fabricius) NB

Chaetarthria seminulum (Herbst) NB

Berosus signaticollis (Charpentier) NB

Ochthebius exsculptus Germar NB

Ochthebius lejolisi Mulsant & Rey NB

Ochthebius marinus (Paykull) NB

Ochthebius nanus Stephens NB

Hydraena minutissima Stephens NB

Hydraena testacea Curtis NB

Oulimnius troglodytes (Gyllenhal) NB

6. Species not seen since the Victoria County History was published in 1906.

6.1. Ground Beetles (Carabidae)

Anisodactylus poeciloides (Stephens) RDB (Rare) and BAP (2007)

Bembidion ephippium (Marsham) Notable A

Diachromus germanus (Linnaeus) Extinct

Ophonus puncticollis (Paykull) RDB3 (Rare)

Ophonus sabulicola (Panzer) RDB 3 (Rare)

Perileptus areolatus (Creutzer) Notable A

6.2. Hister Beetles (Histeridae)

Paromalus flavicornis (Herbst) Local

Halacritus punctum (Aubé) RDBK (Insufficiently known)

6.3. Leiodidae

Agathidium nigrinum Sturm Local

6.4. Rove Beetles (Staphylinidae)

Emus hirtus (Linnaeus) RDB1 (Endangered)

Trichonyx sulcicollis (Reichenbach) RDB2 (Vulnerable)

Batrisodes venustus (Reichenbach) Notable A

6.5. Dung Beetles and Scarabs (Scarabaeidae)

Aphodius scrofa (Fabricius) Extinct

Pleurophorus caesus (Creutzer) Extinct

6.6. Soldier Beetles (Cantharidae)

Podabrus alpinus (Paykull) Local

Malthinus frontalis (Marsham) Notable B

6.7. Hide Beetles (Dermestidae)

Ctesias serra (Fabricius) Notable B

Megatoma undata (Linnaeus) Notable B

6.8. Melyridae

Tillus elongatus (Linnaeus) Notable B

6.9. Nitidulidae

Glischrochilus quadriguttatus (Fabricius) Local

Rhizophagus cribratus Gyllenhal Local

6.10. Erotylidae

Triplax russica (Linnaeus) Notable B

Tritoma bipustulata Fabricius Notable A

6.11. Ciidae

Cis bidentatus (Olivier) Local

Cis setiger Mellié Local

6.12. Mycetophagidae

Mycetophagus multipunctatus Fabricius Local

6.13. Oedemeridae

Ischnomera cyanea (Fabricius) Notable B

6.14. Long-horn Beetles (Cerambycidae)

Acmaeops collaris (Linnaeus) RDB 1 (Endangered)

Leptura fulva (Degeer) RDB 3 (Rare)

Strangalia nigra (Linnaeus) Notable A

6.15. Leaf Beetles (Chrysomelidae)

Agelastica alni (Linnaeus) RDBK (Insufficiently known)

Donacia bicolora Zschach RDB2 (Vulnerable) and BAP (2007)

Longitarsus ferrugineus (Foudras) RDB 1 (Endangered)

Podagrica fuscipes (Fabricius) Notable A

6.16. Weevils (Attelabidae)

Byctiscus populi (Linnaeus) RDB3 (Rare) and BAP (2007)

6.17. Weevils (Curculionidae)

Ceutorhynchus syrites Germar RDB1 (Endangered)

Ceutorhynchus verrucatus Gyllenhal RDB3 (Rare)

Cossonus parallelepipedus (Herbst) Notable B

Limobius borealis (Paykull) Notable A

Rhynchaenus foliorum Mueller Notable A

Xyleborus dispar (Fabricius) Notable B