Beetles represent the largest Order of insects, containing over 250,000 described species. Beetle groups include tiger beetles, ground beetles, water beetles, whirligig beetles, fungus beetles, rove beetles, stag beetles, scarab beetles, wood-boring beetles, click beetles, fireflies, dermestids, ladybird beetles, darkling beetles, longhorn beetles, blister beetles, leaf beetles, weevils and many others.
Found under sheets of lose bark, these beetles live in communal aggregation and feed on the abundant rotting fungus. Mass hangings of pupal cases accompany this happy family. The adults display their hardened wing cases which take on a copper metallic appearance. The majority of insect species including all beetles develop with complete metamorphosis. This means they progress from an egg through a larval and pupal stage before becoming an adult. This system of growth is advantageous as it allows the beetle to develop specialized form and behavior for the fundamental activities of eating and growth versus reproduction as an adult. This adaptational flexibility translates into the stunning number and diversity of beetle species.