Name: Stag Beetle
Scientific name: Lucanus cervus
Nature Stars: 80
About: A very large beetle found in south east England, particularly in south and west London. The larvae live in old trees and rotting wood. Adults can be found during the summer, particularly in the evenings. Males are famous for their massive antler-like jaws that they use in territorial fights. Our biggest beetle, measuring up to 6cm long.
How to identify: Males are unmistakeable. The female is similar to the smaller Lesser Stag Beetle, but has a smaller head and has brown wing cases, not black.
Where: South East England
Fantastic fact: The jaws of males are so big that they can no long use them for feeding! They have to lap up tree sap using their palps instead.
Photograph credit: Mark Denovich