Scientific Classifications explained
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UK Nature > Beetles > Cantharis pellucida
Scientific Name: Cantharis pellucida
Common Name: Soldier Beetle
Cantharis pellucida, or the Soldier Beetle, is a common beetle with a red thorax, abdomen and legs and dark grey or black wing cases. These beetles are frequent visitors to open-structured flowers in the rose family like hawthorn, the daisy family or carrot family, such as angelica, where they feed both on nectar and pollen.
They also prey on other insects which visit the flowers. Soldier beetles are very soft-bodied compared with other beetles. The larvae resemble small velvety caterpillars and are found at the base of long grass.
The adults are around for just a few weeks, in late May and early June. They are predatory on other flower-visiting insects but will also take nectar and pollen. The larvae are predatory on ground-dwelling invertebrates, including slugs and snails.
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