Every time we venture into the garden we come across another unusual find – a bird, insect or plant always captures our attention. This weekend, Richard found a beautifully coloured Golden Stag Beetle. It has taken me a few days to find out what it was (thank you Google). I managed to narrow it down to the Lucanidae family via the CSIRO ‘What Bug Is That?’ website, and then using Lucanidae as the search term, finally found some images. I am pretty sure we do have a Golden Stag Beetle, although the Rainbow Stag Beetle is pretty similar. From the photos I have seen on the web, Rainbow Stag Beetles are primarily green and red, and lack the golden sheen our beetle has.
The Museum of Victoria Discovery Centre website states that Stag Beetles lay their eggs in rotting wood, usually in fallen logs, and the larvae feed on this wood as well as mosses. The adult beetles often feed from flowers.
From the images I have viewed on various websites, I believe our beetle was a female as it lacked the huge mandibles shown on the male Stag Beetles. According to Museum of Victoria, the males use their large mandibles to fight.
Here are two more images of our Golden Stag Beetle.