If there was an Ironman for the beetle species, this would be it. As its name suggests, the Ironclad Beetle is one of the toughest insects around and trying to kill them is no easy task. In fact, since they can withstand nearly 40,000 times their body weight, they can even be run over by a car and be no worse for the wear. Just like Ironman – takes a lickin’ and keeps on tickin’.
Now, before you freak out thinking there is this un-killable, un-squishable predator out there, have no fear because attacking or biting humans is the last thing on their mind. Ironclad beetles much prefer to feast on fresh or rotting plant materials.
Ironclad Beetle Identification
Measuring just under 1/2 an inch to about 1 1/4 inches in length, the adult ironclad beetle’s ridiculously strong, microstructure-filled exoskeleton is covered in off-white and black colored spots. Because they are built like Ironman, they have no need for coloration that allows them to blend in with their surroundings. They can pretty much handle whatever is thrown their way. Unless it’s a drill. Which would be gross. But anything less powerful is no match for that super hard exterior shell.
The diabolical ironclad beetle, or Grand Master D-I-B, as his homies call him, are found mainly in the United States and Mexico, and make their homes under rocks or under the bark of trees. They have even been found holding on for dear life, ok, not really, but they have been known to cling to tree trunks and the sides of homes found in wooded areas.
The D-I-B’s development and life cycle include the egg, larvae, pupal, and adult stages. Not only are they built like a Mack truck, there’s another fun fact about this beetle. They do not have hind wings and their front wings, which are also called elytra, are fused together. What this means is, the ironclad beetle doesn’t have the ability to fly from place to place, but instead, it crawls. Usually when people think of beetles, they think of those speedy little suckers that can high-tail it outta there quickly, but that is not so for Grand Master D-I-B. These bad boys cruise at their own slow-moving pace. And when they are attacked by birds or any other predators, they just stay put or play dead until the predator gives up. Their shells can withstand anything these birds or anything else can bring. No problemo.
The tank-like, crush-resistant bodies of the ironclad beetles are so interesting that they’ve caught the attention of scientists who are now studying what their shells can teach them about designing stronger vehicles, including airplanes, and more durable structures and buildings. All this from a bug. Who knew?
So, what does Grand Master D-I-B have to do with HowToPest.com? Well, to be honest, not much. Their cool factor far outweighs their need to get rid of them, and it is unlikely that there will be any D-I-B infestations that are causing you grief. Where we do come in though is that we have got you covered for all of your other beetle needs. And there are lots of beetle issues out there. Check out our beetle-busting products HERE. The Ironman of beetles is one that we might keep around, but there are so many others that can be a big fat pain in the bootie.
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