The stag beetle is Britain's largest insect and one of the most well-known of all the beetles. The male is easily recognised because of his mouthparts which have evolved into enormous jaws, resembling the antlers on a stag's head.

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Overview

Stag Beetle - Public Domain Photos - FlickrOrder: Coleoptera

Family: Lucanidae

Species: Lucanus cervus (European Stag Beetle)

Distribution: Southern and central Europe. In Britain, they are found in southern and southeastern areas of England.

Habitat: Broad-leaved woodlands, especially oak, but also parks and gardens where there are hedgerows, tree stumps and logs.

Size: Dark, violet-brown elytra (wing cases) with reddish-brown antlers (female's antlers are much smaller than the male's). Larva is creamy-white.

Life-span: The larva lives 3-5 years. Adults live only between the months of May and August.

Food: Larva eats rotting wood and roots. Adult stag beetles are unable to use their jaws for eating at all, however, they can use their tongue to take in moisture and energy from sap and rotting fruit. 

 

Read More: Introduction

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