Bloody-nosed Beetle

Timarcha tenebricosa

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  2. Invertebrates
  3. Beetles
  4. Bloody-nosed Beetle


The Bloody-nosed Beetle is a large, round beetle with long legs that is flightless and can often be seen plodding across paths or through grass. It can be found during the spring and summer in grassland, heathland and along hedgerows. One of our largest 'leaf beetles', adults feed on the leaves of Lady's Bedstraw and related plants, and the larvae can be seen hanging from these plants. The name derives from its defence mechanism, when breathed on, the beetles secrete a blood-red liquid from the mouth which irritates the mouths of mammals.

How to identify

The Bloody-nosed Beetle is a domed, black beetle that is quite slow moving. The line running down its back gives the impression of separate wing cases, but they are actually fused together and this beetle does not fly.

Where to find it

Found in south and central England and Wales.


When to find it

  • April
  • May
  • June
  • July
  • August
  • September

How can people help

The Wildlife Trusts manage many heathland and grassland habitats sympathetically for the benefit of all kinds of wildlife. We are also working closely with farmers, landowners and developers to promote wildlife-friendly practices. We have a vision of a 'Living Landscape': a network of habitats and wildlife corridors across town and country, which are good for both wildlife and people. You can support this greener vision for the future by joining your local Wildlife Trust.

Species information

Common name
Bloody-nosed Beetle
Latin name
Timarcha tenebricosa
Length: 2-2.3cm
Conservation status