Violet Ground Beetle

Carabus violaceus

  1. Wildlife
  2. Invertebrates
  3. Beetles
  4. Violet Ground Beetle


The Violet Ground Beetle is a common beetle found in gardens, farmland and meadows. Ground beetles are active, nocturnal predators, chasing and catching smaller invertebrates; they are particularly helpful to gardeners as they prey on many 'pest' species such as slugs. They can often be found resting during the day under logs and stones and in leaf litter. Adult females lay their eggs in soil and the larvae hatch, becoming active predators themselves.

How to identify

The Violet Ground Beetle is black with a metallic purple sheen, especially around the flattened edges of its fused wing cases. There are several closely related species of Carabus beetle which are very difficult to tell apart.

Where to find it



When to find it

  • March
  • April
  • May
  • June
  • July
  • August
  • September
  • October

How can people help

Many of our commonly overlooked insects are actually important pest controllers in the garden: the Violet Ground Beetle loves hunting down slugs, for instance. Minibeasts can be encouraged by the provision of logs, stone piles and compost heaps for them to hide, feed and breed in. In turn, other species will be attracted to the garden, as minibeasts are a food source for many animals, including mammals, birds and amphibians, providing a vital link in the food chain. To find out more about encouraging wildlife into your garden, visit our Wild About Gardens website: a joint initiative with the RHS, there's plenty of facts and tips to get you started.

Species information

Common name
Violet Ground Beetle
Latin name
Carabus violaceus
Length: 3cm
Conservation status