The larva of Eustra (Coleoptera, Paussinae, Ozaenini): A facultative associate of ants

Wendy Moore, Xiao Bin Song, Andrea di Giulio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Larvae of the ground beetle genus Eustra Schmidt-Goebel are described and illustrated for the fi rst time and some biological notes are reported. One specimen of an unknown Eustra species was collected while excavating a nest of the ant Pachycondyla javana Mayr, in Taiwan, which is the first report of a paussine associated with a member of the ant subfamily Ponerinae. Several larvae and adults of a second species, E. chinensis Bänninger, were collected in Shanghai under bark with no association with ants. First instar larvae of the latter species were also reared in the lab. The occurrence of larvae of the genus Eustra both inside and outside ant nests, together with a report of adults collected inside a nest in Taiwan, suggests that members of this genus may be facultative predators or facultative symbionts of ants, an attribute that has never been reported for this genus. Th e larvae of Eustra show several unique features, including a peculiar bidentate mandibular apex, an extremely long galea, one of two tarsal claws greatly reduced, abdominal setae (including those of terminal disk) elongate and clavate at apex, urogomphi wide and flattened, and inflated sensilla S-I. Larvae were studied by both optical and scanning electron microscopy, their morphological features are compared with those of other described Paussinae larvae, and their potential phylogenetic and functional significance are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)63-82
Number of pages20
StatePublished - 2011


  • Flanged bombardier beetles
  • Larvae
  • Myrmecophily
  • Southeast Asia
  • Systematics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Animal Science and Zoology


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