Xylotrupes gideon (Linnaeus)
(Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae)

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Characteristic of these large nocturnal beetles is the robust, stout body with well developed mandibles that are invisible from above. The adults are of black or dark brown coloration. The male Xylotrupes gideon possess more or less long horns that lack the females. The terminal segments of the antennae mostly form a club of movable plates or lamellae. The grub-like larvae are scarabaeiform, white and C-shaped with a prominent dark head and three pairs of legs.

Generally, the Scarabaeidae can be divided into phytophages and coprophages (dung beetles). The adults of phytophagous species usually feed on foliage and their larvae on the roots of various plants. Many species are considered as serious pests in agriculture, like the Taro beetle Papuana, Oryctes rhiconeros on coconut and Xylotrupes gideon. The huge sized Dynastinae include the very common Rhinoceros beetles Xylotrupes gideon, Scapanes australis, Eupatorus beccarii, the introduced Oryctes and Papuana spp.


Xylotrupes gideon male (left) and female (right)

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Michael F. Schneider, 1999