Cicindela sexguttata

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Cicindela sexguttata
Cicindela sexguttata Fabricius 1.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Coleoptera
Family: Carabidae
Genus: Cicindela
Species: C. sexguttata
Binomial name
Cicindela sexguttata
Fabricius, 1775

The Six-Spotted Tiger Beetle or Six-spotted Green Tiger Beetle (Cicindela sexguttata) is a common North American species of ground beetle in the Cicindelinae subfamily.


They are commonly found in deciduous forests in between Minnesota,[1] Rhode Island, and Ontario and south to Kentucky, and are easily recognizable by their large, white, overlapping mandibles. The imago (adult) is 12–14 mm (1/2-5/8") in length,[2] with long legs. Their large, white mandibles give these attractive insects a ferocious appearance. While tiger beetles are voracious predators of small arthropods, they do not bite humans unless handled and their bite is a barely noticeable pinch. The adults can also defend itself by secreting a foul-smelling liquid.[3] Both the common name and the species name refer to the number of small white spots on the beetle's metallic-green to metallic-blue elytra, usually numbering six. This is not always true, however, as some individuals have more spots,[4] fewer spots, or none at all. Six-spotted Tiger Beetles live in woody places, and they like shady openings such as dirt paths and fallen logs to hunt caterpillars, ants, spiders, and many other kinds of arthropods. This species is not gregarious, but sometimes many beetles may be seen in one fallen log. The females lay eggs in sandy patches, and the larvae burrow into the ground when they hatch. Here they lie in wait until small arthropods walk by, where then the larvae pounce much like jack in the boxes. The beetles develop as larvae for about one year before pupating and the insect has a total lifespan of just under 5 years.



  1. ^ Val Cervenka (November–December 2013). "Beetlemania!". DNR (Minnesota Conservation Volunteer): 61. 
  2. ^ Milne, Lorus (2000). National Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Insects & Spiders. Margery Milne (Alfred A. Knopf). ISBN 0-394-50763-0. 
  3. ^ National Wildlife Federation Field Guide to Insects and Spiders of North America, by Arthur V. Evans
  4. ^ "UW-Milwaukee: Field Station - Bug of the Week: Tiger Beetles". UW-Milwaukee: Field Station. Retrieved 1 July 2014. 

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