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Soldier beetle (Cantharis fusca) mating P.jpg
Cantharis fusca mating
Kampinos Forest, Poland
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Coleoptera
Family: Cantharidae
Genus: Cantharis
Linnaeus, 1758

Cantharis is a large genus of soldier beetles in the family Cantharidae with narrow and soft elytra.

The poisonous Spanish fly is superficially similar and is associated with the scientific name Cantharis vesicatoria. It is also sometimes called "cantharis" in the vernacular, but it is actually unrelated to Cantharis and is not a member of the Cantharidae at all. It was classified there erroneously until Johan Christian Fabricius corrected its name in his Systema entomologiae in 1775. He reclassified the Spanish fly in the new genus Lytta as Lytta vesicatioria. It belongs to the family Meloidae.[1]

European species[edit]

Subgenus Cantharis[edit]

Cantharis decipiens
Cantharis lateralis
Cantharis pellucida
Cantharis rustica

Subgenus Cyrtomoptila[edit]

References and notes[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • Wittmer W., Kasantsev S. (1997) On the classification of the genus Cantharis Linné (Coleoptera, Cantharidae). Entomologica Basiliensia 20: 367-372.

External links[edit]