SPECIES ID / Invertebrates

Water Beetles

Water Scavenger Beetles

  • 192 species in North America
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Coleoptera
Family: Hydrophilidae

Identification Tips:

• Body curves outward on top but is flat or in-curved on the bottom
• Short club antennae and longer segmented structures protrude from head
• Hind legs long, flattened and with stiff hairs to assist in swimming

Life History:

• Found in all types of aquatic habitats
• Most common in shallow water with abundant vegetation
• Larvae are air breathing, predatory and climb in aquatic vegetation
• Adults are free swimming, predatory and scavenging
• They carry a bubble of air beneath their wings to supply oxygen while underwater

Very Sensitive Somewhat Sensitive Facultative Somewhat Tolerant Very Tolerant
      Most Some

Primary Information Source:
Voshell, J. Reese. 2002. A Guide to Common Freshwater Invertebrates of North America. McDonald and Woodward Publishing Company. Blacksburg, Virginia.