|Description:||Under a low magnification of only 73x, this scanning electron microscopic (SEM) image depicted the region of one of the legs of an adult “figeater” beetle’s, Cotinis mutabilis, leg, which included the tibiotarsal joint in the background, and the tarsopretarsal joint in the foreground. The numerous “hairs”, or setae, adorning almost all of the insect’s exterior surfaces, act as sensory structures, supplying the organism with information about its environmental parameters.|
Sometimes referred to as a “junebug, this insect is a member of the taxonomic family, Scarabaeidae, or dung beetles. Due to the jointed nature of this organism’s leg configuration, it is classified in the phylum, Arthropoda, i.e., “Arthro” = jointed, and “poda” = legs. This beetle was found in the Decatur, Georgia suburbs.
The dorsum of the adult figeater beetle is a drab green color, while its ventral surface is a vivid iridescent green. Their diet mainly consists of soft, overly ripe fruits including figs, hence its name. However, it’s the larval phase of this insect, which wrecks more havoc upon agricultural crops than adults, for the larvae, which burrow into the soils, will feed upon the crop roots, thereby, killing the fruit-bearing plants.