Melanotus villosus (Geoffroy, 1785)

   Locally common throughout England and Wales with scattered across Scotland. Adults hibernate under bark or in soft wood of decaying trees, usually deciduous but they have been recorded from coniferous wood. They are found throughout Watford during the winter months and it would seem they do not become active until May, sometimes seen on leaves near ground level and occasionally on umbel flowers near woodland. The larvae inhabit soil around roots and fallen timber and are carniverous and necrophagus. Pupation takes place at the end of summer and adults move into wood to hibernate.
  11-16mm.??. Shape characteristic. Black, legs and antennae beyond middle a little lighter, rufopiceous. Antennal joints 2-3 small, 5-7 weakly keeled above, serrate beyond 4, distance between insertion about the length of joint 1. Tibiae narrow subparallel. Tarsi 5-5-5, all joints obvious, 4 smallest but more than half the length of 3, not lobed below. Claws serrate, obvious at X20. Head, thorax and elytra punctate and pubescent throughout. Pronotal hind angles strongly produced and keeled close to margin, posterior margin weakly produced in middle. Elytra with strongly punctured striae to apex.

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