close x

Great diving beetle

Great diving beetle

The great diving beetle dytiscus marginalis is one of our largest water beetles, although there are several closely related species.

This versatile and common beetle is found in still or slow flowing waters, occasionally fast flowing. Most likely in small ponds, adults can be found all year round but peaks are usually in May and September.

The larvae are carnivorous, feeding on a wide range of aquatic life; they are ferocious hunters. When ready to pupate, they crawl out of the water to look for a suitable site in damp soil, perhaps several metres from the pond. Adults hatch around September and overwinter at the bottom of the pool until spring, when they look for a mate and lay eggs. Adults can live for several years in captivity. Like the larvae, they are carnivorous; they tear their prey into pieces and swallow them. They take off and fly vertically at night and are therefore able to colonise other areas.

great diving beetle dytiscu

The Balfour-Brown Club (Aquatic Coleoptera Conservation Trust) was formed in 1976 to study water beetles.

Photos: Paul D. Brock


ID Tip

ID Tip

26-32 mm long, black with a continuous yellow margin around the thorax and wingcases. The underside is yellow. Try a pond-dipping event in the area sometime e.g. Blashford Lakes, and this is one of the likely finds.

Gillie
Molland
Lead Ranger

profile

'To help ground nesting birds rear their young safely, keep yourself, dogs and ridden horses on the main tracks from the beginning of March to the end of July.'

Newsletter Image

Email

Newsletter

6

Free

Six free walking routes when you sign up for New Forest Newsletter


Key To Map

Choose the categories you would like to display on the map.

Subscribe to New Forest National Park Authority

By entering your email below you are consenting to us sending you newsletters. To unsubscribe, email communications@newforestnpa.gov.uk. More info: www.newforestnpa.gov.uk/privacy-cookies


I think you mistyped your email
Your interests (tick at least one)








Please select one

By signing up to this form you are consenting to receive emails from us. Each email will contain a link to your personal reference settings where you can opt-out or change which emails you receive from us. Please read our Privacy Policyfor more information about how we use data.

Subscribe to New Forest National Park Authority

Thanks, your subscription has been confirmed. You've been added to our list and your New Forest walking pack is on its way to you, including a link to download our free app.