*Japanese name: Hanmyo
*Scientific name: Cicindela chinensis japonica
* Description: Tiger beetles have strong jaws and metallic
blue, red and green bodies. The pattern on their bodies makes it
difficult for them to be spotted by enemies — and by us, too.
You’re most likely to see tiger beetles flying short distances,
close to the ground. Watch for where they land, and sneak up on
them. Adults are 20 mm long.
*Where to find them: Tiger beetles are active on sunny
days from April to August. They live in flat, sandy or rocky
areas, on trails and in forest openings.
* Food: The eating habits of tiger beetles are hinted at
in their name. They are predatory insects that ambush and
kill other insects with their strong jaws. Their larvae are also
predatory, lurking in holes in the ground into which they drag
*Special features: Predators have to move fast to catch
their prey. Tiger beetles run in zig-zags along the ground on
their long legs and can quickly take flight, unlike most other
beetles. Hidden folded under their shiny, protective elytra
is a pair of wings that can instantly unwrap.
Females make a hole in the ground with their ovipositor and
lay their eggs one by one. The larvae hatch and enlarge the hole.
They fasten themselves into their burrow in an S-shape, using
special hooks on their thorax to anchor them when they
bite and drag in their prey.
Predatory: Animals that live
by capturing and feeding on other animals follow a predatory
Elytra: The forewings of all
beetles are modified into armored shells called elytra.