Platycerus caraboides has a flat body, green or iridescent blue. It can be easily distinguished as a stag beetle by its elbowed antennae.
The adults grow up to 9–13 millimetres (0.35–0.51 in) long and can mostly be encountered from May through July, flying around during the day in deciduous forests or staying on the ground on rotten branches. The predominantly host-plants are broadleaf plants, but also conifers (mainly Pinus species). The larvae usually live on decayed wood of oak and beech.
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