Scientific Classifications explained
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UK Nature > Beetles > Cantharis nigricans
Scientific Name: Cantharis nigricans
Common Name: Soldier Beetle
Cantharis nigricans, a Soldier Beetle, is around 9 to 11 mm in length. It has grey-black elytra and a yellow-orange pronotum which may have a central darker mark (as in photo above). The black on the orange hind legs extends above the 'knee'.
They usually live in hedgerows and flower meadows where they visit blossom and flowers such as Hogweed. Flight period is May to July. Cantharidae larvae live on the ground and are carnivorous, feeding on smaller insects.
The adults are also carnivorous, but are greatly attracted to flowers where they hunt other flower-visiting insects. Widespread and quite common in the UK..
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