tiger beetle noun
: any of numerous active carnivorous beetles (family Cicindelidae) having larvae that tunnel in the soil
First Known Use of TIGER BEETLE
tiger beetle noun (Concise Encyclopedia)
Any of some 2,000 species (family Cicindelidae) of voracious beetles, found worldwide but mostly in the tropics and subtropics. The larva waits at the top of its burrow (up to 2 ft, or 0.7 m, deep) and grasps approaching insect prey with sicklelike jaws. Hooks on the abdomen anchor it so that the struggling victim cannot pull away, and the prey is dragged into the burrow and eaten. The slender, long-legged adults, less than an inch (25 mm) long, have long jaws that can inflict a painful bite. Many are iridescent blue, green, orange, or scarlet.
Tiger beetle (Cicindela).—William E. Ferguson
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