Colorful Foliage Ground Beetles
Family: Carabidae
Subfamily: Carabinae
Tribe: Lebiini
Genus: Lebia
Pictorial Key
Size: 2mm-4.5mm
Threadlike Antennae
The carabidae family of beetles is the third largest in North America with about 150 genera and 1700 species and have several distinctive characteristics. The hind coxae divide the first abdominal segment, and the threadlike antennae (occasionally beadlike) are inserted in between the eyes and the forward pointing mandables. Most Carabidae beetles are black and long legged with shiny, striate elytra. Some however, like the Colorful Ground Beetle photographed here, are gold, green or orange. Species range from 1-35mm. They can be found, as their name implies, on the ground. They are active at night and can be found under objects during the day. Most ground beetles feed on small insects.
Unusual for ground beetles, the species in the Lebiini Tribe are common on flowers and foliage during summer days. The largest genus, of which this species is a member, is the Lebia genus. There are 24 pecies, ranging from 3-10mm in length. Adults feed on plant lice and other insects.