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Content tagged with "insect"

Amazing Assassins

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They're deadly predators, and a few species of assassin bugs may even be dangerous to humans.

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American burying beetle

American Burying Beetle

Nicrophorus americanus
This brightly patterned beetle specializes in cleaning carrion from the landscape, burying dead mice, birds, and other creatures. It is endangered in our nation and in our state, and restoration efforts are under way.

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Image of an American burying beetle

American Burying Beetle

The American burying beetle (Nicrophorus americanus) used to be common but is now a critically endangered species. It only occurs in a few places in the United States. The Saint Louis Zoo, with other conservation institutions including MDC, has a captive breeding program and is working to restore this species to the wild.

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image of American Carrion Beetle

American Carrion Beetle

In flight, the American carrion beetle (Necrophila americana) looks a lot like a bumblebee. Adults eat fly maggots, plus some carrion. The larvae are black, teardrop-shaped grubs that look something like a sowbug. They hatch after the dead animal has dried somewhat and eat on the carrion too, particularly dried skin, then creep away to pupate.

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Photo of an American Snout

American Snout

Libytheana carinent
Most of us identify butterflies by their color patterns, but you can ID this Missouri species by its long “nose.”

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