Scientific Classifications explained
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UK Nature > Beetles > Cantharis rustica
Scientific Name: Cantharis rustica
Common Name: Soldier Beetle
Cantharis rustica, or Soldier Beetle, has a length of 9-13mm with a narrow, elongated body and soft, smoothish, slightly hairy elytra indicative of the Cantharidae, of which there are about 40 species in the UK. It has a distinctive heart-shaped black mark in the middle of its red pronotum.
Adults are active mid May to early July, usually on flowers, particularly umbellifers such as Hogweed, and are carnivorous, sometimes feeding on other visitors. The larvae live on the ground, feeding on a variety of other creatures. Found in any well-vegetated habitat, they are common and widespread throughout the UK, although scarcer in the north of Scotland.
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