Entomology (Study of Bugs)/Bug identifiation


Mystery bug
Mystery bug  
Good day,
When I went to do laundry in the basement of my apartment building, I found this bug dead on the floor. Would it be possible to have it identified? I live in Ottawa, Ontario.


Dear Michael - This is an American carrion beetle, Necrophila americana (Coleoptera: Silphidae); it is an accidental intruder indoors. These beetles and their relatives in the family Silphidae perform a valuable recycling service, 'processing' the carcasses of small mammals and birds. See http://tinyurl.com/k4u7p3y and http://tinyurl.com/ofvxrvq for more detailed information on these fascinating insects.
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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