Xylotrupes gideon

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Xylotrupes gideon
Male specimen of the Siamese rhinoceros beetle
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Coleoptera
Family: Scarabaeidae
Subfamily: Dynastinae
Genus: Xylotrupes
Species: X. gideon
Binomial name
Xylotrupes gideon
Guérin-Méneville, 1830

The Siamese rhinoceros beetle or fighting beetle, Xylotrupes gideon, is a species of large scarab beetle belonging to the subfamily Dynastinae. It is particularly known for its role in insect fighting in Thailand, but is found across much of Southeast Asia, south to Australia and east to the Solomon Islands. Males can grow to between 4–6 cm long and are dark red, dark brown, or black in coloration. When disturbed they make a hissing noise.[1]

Beetle fighting[edit]

Xylotrupes gideon, lateral view

These beetles are used for staging beetle fights, a traditional entertainment popular in the northern region of Thailand. They are captured and trained by their owners to become stronger and more aggressive.[2]

In the fight the beetle that lifts its opponent up by its horns wins. A bug may also win if his opponent walks away, falls or is overturned.[3]

Insect fighting is mostly practiced in the Chiang Mai and Nan provinces of Thailand. It is also popular in Myanmar and Northern Laos. Spectators usually place bets on the fights.[4]

Insect coaches claim that their activity provides a free pastime while drawing attention upon insects that would otherwise have been ignored or just killed as pests.[5]

See also[edit]

Female Xylotrupes gideon philippinensis on Orchid Island.


External links[edit]