This beetle belongs to a large family of over 7,000 species,
about 60 of which live in Britain. All of the family are elongate, bullet
shaped, and all have the ability to leap into the air to right themselves
if they fall onto their backs, this action is accompanied by a loud
click, hence the name.
If, as mentioned above, these beetles roll over on their
backs when basking on the grass, they recover by suddenly flexing their
bodies with a clicking noise as explained in the diagram below:
When the Click
beetle falls on it's back it rights itself by somersaulting.
It arches it's back so that a notch on the peg engage with a
lip on the edge of the pit. Under the tension of the peg moving
muscle the peg slams into the pit throwing the beetle up into
the air, somettimes to a height of 12 inches
Many of the Click beetles, such as the
one pictured above, live in the woodlands. Others such as Agriotes
lineatus, have soil living larvae which are known as wireworms,
and which are often confused with Centipedes.
The natural home of wireworms is under
grass, but when this is plowed up , they can do considerable damage
to the roots of crops which are planted later.
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