Onychocerus scorpio

Flat-faced Longhorned Beetle

Onychocerus scorpio, Cacao Longhorned Beetle, photo from Suriname

Family: Cerambycidae

Subfamily: Lamiinae

Length: 12 - 25 mm


Synonym (nomen nudem): Onychocerus crassus.

Hequet (1996) comments that these beetles attack the jobo tree (Spondias mombin, also called hog plum and tapiriba).

Both the generic and specific epithets refer to a sharp "sting" on the eleventh antennal segment. Onychocerus means "claw-horned," and scorpio, of course, refers to the scorpion. While not venemous, the beetle can jab the skin with the sting, perhaps managing to escape during the startle reaction.

The beetle is also protected by its excellent camouflage, which seems perfectly fitted for the bark of the jobo.

Range: Panama and the West Indies south to Argentina.

Photo notes: The beetle shown here was at rest on the leaf of a Morning Glory vine. Brokopondo district, Suriname.

Determined by Dr. Miguel Monné, Museu Nacional, Rio de Janeiro.

Flat-faced Longhorn Beetle, Onychocerus scorpio, Suriname image

Onychocerus scorpio, photo from Suriname, Longhorned Beetle

American Insects site