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Entomology (Study of Bugs)/Could you kindly identify this bug for me?


Image of bug
Image of bug  

I recently came across this bug on one of my walls in my apartment. Upon touching it, it dropped to the floor. I used a container to keep it in one place before I got the bug spray to get rid of it, however, when I lifted the container the bug apppeared to have died. After I sprayed a little bit it started moving again which apparently meant that it was playing dead before the spray actually killed it. The bug was approximately 3/4 inch long and a quarter of an inch (at best) wide.

Thanks in advance for any information or advice with regard to this matter.


P.S. Let me know if you need a better picture of the bug.

Dear Mark - You killed a harmless visitor; it is a click beetle (Coleoptera: Elateridae). They are good fliers, and often enter buildings accidentally, but they do no harm there and will not cause any infestation (their larvae live in soil beneath the surface).
Hope this helps,

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Ed Saugstad


Will accept most questions in general entomology, including those related to medical entomology, taxonomy, ecology, arthropod surveillance, and pest management. If you are requesting a 'mystery bug' identification, PLEASE either attach an image to your question, or post an image on a web page (such as Flickr) so that I can look at it, as verbal descriptions frequently are insufficient for a definitive identification.


21 years in the U.S. Army as a medical entomologist; duties varied from surveillance of pest populations (including mosquitoes, cockroaches, ticks, and stored products pests) to conducting research on mosquito-virus ecological relationships and mosquito faunal studies. Ten years as a civilian analyst for the Department of Defense, primarily on distribution of vector-borne diseases worldwide. Limited experience on surveillance of agricultural insects in North Dakota and Indiana.

Entomological Society of America, West Virginia Entomological Society, Society for Vector Ecology, National Speleological Society, West Virginia Association for Cave Studies.

American Journal of Public Health, Contributions of the American Entomological Institute, Japanese Journal of Sanitary Zoology, Journal of Economic Entomology, Mosquito News, and Mosquito Systematics.

B.S. in entomology from North Dakota State University in 1963, M.S. in entomology from Purdue University in 1967.

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