Last night, while draping my grape vines with window screening to keep them out of the mouths of deer, I found amid the folds a substantial beetle. It was almost 1.5 inches long, the biggest I’d ever seen outside of captivity. I finished covering the grape vines and went to bed. At dawn, the beetle was gone.
The insect apparently is an eastern Hercules beetle, according to the Home and Garden Information Center, University of Maryland Extension horticultural consultants.
Despite its size, which ranges from 1.5 to 2.5 inches long, the beetle is not frequently encountered. It feeds on rotting organic material and males come with long horns, according to information from Texas A&M and Bug Guide, an online community of naturalists.
© 2016 John A. Bray