Ship-timber Beetles-Lymexylidae


Ship-timber Beetles- Lymexylidae

The males and females of the family Lymexylidae differ markedly in the size, color, and structure of their antennae and mouthparts. The maxillary palpi (the segmented appendages located just behind the mandibles) of the females are typical of most Coleoptera. In the males, however, the last segment of the maxillary palpi is greatly enlarged and covered with long bristles. It is believed that the enlarged palpi of the males function as olfactory organs-intricate sniffers by which the males track down the females.

Lymexylon. The long, thin, yellowish-red beetles of the family Lymexylidae were at one time feared by European shipbuilders. Lymexylon no-vale, the species commonly found in shipyards, attacks stacks of oak timbers waiting to be used as ribs and sheath ing for sailing vessels. The long, hooded, cylindrical larvae of L. navale bore into timber, leaving a lacework of tunnels, some of which are up to 10 feet in length.

Hylocoetus. This genus contains the North American members of the Lymexylidae. Commonly called timberworms, the larvae of Hylocoetus are sometimes regarded as serious pests. But the population of this genus is small and the damage they are able to do is therefore slight.


INDEX : Insects   January 11, 2016 02:25:46 PM