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Macro Mãe-do-sol ou Olho-do-sol - Metallic bark beetle or Giant metallic wood boring beetle or Giant metallic ceiba borer beetle (Euchroma gigantea) 20 478 - 10

A text in english:

This Giant metallic wood boring beetle from Ecuador has been frequently collected for its superb iridescent wing cases that reflect most colors of the rainbow. The elytra are used to adorn textiles worldwide and represent an exotic decoration without having to use expensive minerals. The Shaur tribes of Amazonia use the beetle to make decorative ornaments symbolizing wealth, well-being and personal power. This large beetle is a strong flier and is often attracted to freshly cut trees.

Giant metallic ceiba borer

Euchroma gigantea

FAMILY

Buprestidae

TAXONOMY

Buprestis gigantea Linnaeus, 1758, "America."

OTHER COMMON NAMES

Spanish: Eucroma, catzo; Portuguese: Mae do sol, ôlho do sol.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

Grows to 2–2.8 in (5–7 cm). Wrinkled elytra, shining green infused with red. Back of prothorax has two large black spots. Freshly emerged specimens covered with yellow bloom.

DISTRIBUTION

Mexico to Argentina and the Antilles.

HABITAT

Tropical forests.

BEHAVIOR

Common on trunks of living or dead bombacaceous trees.

FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET

Larvae bore through trunks of dead bombacaceous trees.

REPRODUCTIVE BIOLOGY

Nothing is known.

CONSERVATION STATUS

Not threatened.

SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS

Elytra are made into jewelry and ornaments by peoples in Central and South America; adults are eaten by Tzeltal-Mayan Indians in Chiapas, Mexico.

See an interesting text in english from I R Schwab - University of California, Davis, Sacramento, CA, USA; irschwab@ucdavis.edu at the following internet page:

bjo.bmj.com/cgi/content/full/88/7/857

 

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Taken on October 29, 2006