Entomology (Study of Bugs)/Mystery Beetle?


mystery bug
mystery bug  
I live in Pennsylvania; suburbs just outside of Philadelphia. I have been finding these bugs around the house in all rooms (kitchen near the sink, hallway and living room.) The closest matching image that I can find online is of a click beetle. Image of my bug is attached. This one measured about 1/2 inch in length, however the largest one I've found was almost an inch long. Thanks in advance!

Hi, Andrea:

Thanks for including the image with your question.  I can confirm your own diagnosis:  This is indeed a click beetle, family Elateridae.  Click beetles are diverse, abundant, and are often attracted to lights at night.  I suspect you might have an open window or door that is letting them in, though they also like to hunker down in snug places during the day.  So, they may be hiding in door jambs or other places and then sneaking inside.

Click beetles pose no threat to people, pets, or property.

Enjoy the rest of your summer!


Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Eric R. Eaton


I answer insect and spider identification questions ONLY. Attach images if possible. No "what bit me?", "what do I feed this bug in captivity?", or science fair project questions please. NO TECHNICAL QUESTIONS ABOUT INSECT PHYSIOLOGY.


Principal author, Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America. Professional entomologist employed previously at University of Massachusetts, Chase Studio, Inc., and Cincinnati Zoo; contract work for West Virginia Department of Natural Resources, Smithsonian Institution, and Portland (Oregon) State University.

Author, Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America, Missouri Conservationist magazine, Ranger Rick, Birds & Blooms, Timeline (journal of the Ohio Historical Society). I have contributed to several books as well.

Oregon State University, undergraduate major in entomology, did not receive degree.

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One of the top 50 experts in all categories for AllExperts.com, 2009.

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Principal author of the Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America, Smithsonian Institution (contract), Cincinnati Zoo (employer), Portland State University (contract), Chase Studio, Inc (employer), Arkansas Museum of Discovery (guest speaker). Currently seeking speaking engagements, leadership roles at nature festivals, workshops, and ecotours.

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