stag beetle

any of numerous lamellicorn beetles of the family Lucanidae, some of the males of which have mandibles resembling the antlers of a stag.
[1675-85]

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insect
also called  Pinching Bug,  

      any of some 900 species of beetles (insect order Coleoptera) in which the mandibles (jaws) are greatly developed in the male and resemble the antlers of a stag. In many species the elaborately branched and toothed mandibles may be as long as the beetle itself. If handled carelessly, their pinch can draw blood from a person. In some cases, however, the mandibles are large enough to be a handicap to the beetle's movement.

      Most stag beetles are robust and black or brown. However, a few are brightly coloured. Paintings of Chaisognathus granti from Chile, which is metallic green and iridescent red, and Phalacrognathus muelleri from Australia, which is metallic carmine and edged with green, have been used on postage stamps.

      Adult stag beetles range between 8 and 40 millimetres (1/3 to 1 2/3 inches) in length, although the male of the East Indian Odontolabis alces is more than 100 mm long. The male giraffe stag beetle (Cladognathus giraffa) of India and Java is almost as long, and its jaws make up about half of its total length. Most stag beetles live around rotting logs on which the larvae feed. Adults feed on sap. Adults are attracted to lights at night.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Stag beetle — Stag Stag (st[a^]g), n. [Icel. steggr the male of several animals; or a doubtful AS. stagga. Cf. {Steg}.] 1. (Zo[ o]l.) (a) The adult male of the red deer ({Cervus elaphus}), a large European species closely related to the American elk, or wapiti …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • stag beetle — ► NOUN ▪ a large dark beetle, the male of which has large branched jaws resembling antlers …   English terms dictionary

  • stag beetle — n. any of a family (Lucanidae) of large beetles: the male has long, branched, antlerlike mandibles …   English World dictionary

  • Stag beetle — Taxobox name = Stag beetles image width = 220px image caption = Male Lucanus cervus regnum = Animalia phylum = Arthropoda classis = Insecta ordo = Coleoptera subordo = Polyphaga infraordo = Scarabaeiformia superfamilia = Scarabaeoidea familia =… …   Wikipedia

  • stag beetle — noun a kind of lamellicorn beetle; the male has branched mandibles resembling antlers • Hypernyms: ↑lamellicorn beetle • Member Holonyms: ↑Lucanidae, ↑family Lucanidae * * * ˈstag beetle 7 [stag beetle] …   Useful english dictionary

  • stag beetle — stag′ bee tle n. ent any of numerous beetles of the family Lucanidae, some of the males of which have mandibles resembling the antlers of a stag • Etymology: 1675–85 …   From formal English to slang

  • stag beetle — noun Any of numerous large beetles of the family Lucanidae; the males have elaborate mandibles resembling the antlers of a stag; especially the species Lucanus cervus, which is the largest beetle in the UK …   Wiktionary

  • stag-beetle — /ˈstæg bitl/ (say stag beetl) noun any of the lamellicorn beetles constituting the family Lucanidae. The males have mandibles resembling a stag s antlers …   Australian English dictionary

  • stag beetle — noun Date: 1681 any of a family (Lucanidae) of mostly large beetles having males with long and often branched mandibles suggesting the antlers of a stag …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • stag-beetle — noun A large black beetle with a pair of strong mandibles …   Wiktionary

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