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Red-tipped Flower Beetle Malachius bipustulatus

In the picture a very beautiful beetle. It is one of the Malachids, of which some 16 species can be found in Britain. Each species has its own combination of metallic colours, usually green and red or blue and red. Malachids have soft wings as well and their shape reminds one of the soldier beetles as well. But usually their shields are quite short, leaving the rear end of the actually body exposed. The species below is called Red-tipped Flower Beetle for obvious reasons and it is a frequently seen species in many gardens. It hunts for other small insects, but eats pollen as well. The Red-tipped Flower Beetle can be seen from early spring till late autumn, although it is abundant in June and July only. It used to live in wildflower fields and meadows, but later invaded parks and gardens as well. It shows little variation in length: some 6 mm. The larvae are hunters. They are found in cow dung and moulded wood where they hunt for the larvae of other insects.