Meru (beetle)

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Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Coleoptera
Suborder: Adephaga
Family: Meruidae
Genus: Meru
Species: M. phyllisae
Binomial name
Meru phyllisae
Spangler & Steiner, 2005

Meruidae is a recently described family of aquatic beetles in the suborder Adephaga,[1] with only one genus and species, Meru phyllisae. This beetle species was first found in the early 1980s.[2] At 0.8 mm, it is one of the smallest adephagan beetles in the world. A recent survey of aquatic beetles of Venezuela prove that Meru is most common during the wet season, when larger areas of granitic rock surface are covered with water film, which the adult beetles as well as the larvae inhabit.


The name Meruidae comes from the local Pemon people word for waterfall, meru. The beetle was given this name because it can being only found in cascading water.[3]


Meru phyllisae is only known from the natural cascading waterfalls in El Tobogán, Las Amazonas, Venezuela. Although it is remote location that is strongly protected, Venezuelan tourists visit the place because of its uniqueness, causing habitat degradation.[2]


  1. ^ Steiner, Warren. 2005. Meruidae. Version 1 January 2005 (temporary). in The Tree of Life Web Project,
  2. ^ a b Paul J. Spangler, Warren E. Steiner JR (2005) A new aquatic beetle family, Meruidae, from Venezuela (Coleoptera: Adephaga) Systematic Entomology 30 (3), 339–357
  3. ^