Ground Beetles of Ireland


Demetrias atricapillus

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Demetrias atricapillus
© Roy Anderson
Demetrias atricapillus
© Roy Anderson
Demetrias atricapillus
© Roy Anderson
Demetrias atricapillus
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(Maps updated 30th November 2009)
 

Demetrias atricapillus (Linnaeus, 1758)

Description: A pale, 4.5-5.5mm long, yellowish-brown ground beetle with black head and red pronotum. Found in reed beds and tall marginal vegetation near water along the east and south coasts. Climbs vegetation.
 

World Distribution: A European Southern-temperate species (83) recorded from the extreme south of Fennoscandia, and the British Isles south to Iberia and north Africa and east to Asia Minor.
 

Irish Status: Locally distributed along south and east coasts where it may be abundant in dune slack areas.
 

Ecology: Tends to be restricted to well-drained soils or mesotrophic wetlands inland where it inhabits tussocks and tall vegetation in the vicinity of water. Often recorded in company with Dromius linearis and D. melanocephalus. There is a single record for arable land (Ballywalter, Down), but in southern Britain it is regarded as an important predator of cereal aphids, hibernating in grass tussocks such as cocksfoot on field boundaries (Thomas et al., 1992).