The_Kingfisher's picture

Stag Beetle Larvae

Observed: 6th April 2012 By: The_KingfisherThe_Kingfisher’s reputation in InvertebratesThe_Kingfisher’s reputation in Invertebrates

I was very shocked to find this and it took me a while to find out what it was! I found it while digging and was very careful to preserve the soil around it and bury it again in the same place once I had finished!

Species interactions

No interactions present.

Species with which Common Cockchafer (Melolontha melolontha) interacts


chrisbrooks's picture

ID comment

Hi, was it in the earth and if so how far down ?

The_Kingfisher's picture

Yes it was in the earth, this

Yes it was in the earth, this was back in April and I'm cursed with an awful memory but I'd say maybe 10cm or so? I tried to put it back the same depth at which I found it.

The_Kingfisher's picture


Ah nooo! I was convinced it was a stag beetle! The grubs look so similar, how can you tell the difference?

chrisbrooks's picture

General rule

As a starter and this is just a guide and not definitive, if in soil / earth it's likely to be a Chafer Larvae, if in compost heap or similar then it could be a Stag Beetle Larvae. There are differences such as length of the legs etc but you need close up shots for this.

The_Kingfisher's picture


Ok well where I found it was next to a compost heap, but it was a very old compost heap which had turned into soil, which I was digging up to use elsewhere. So kind of a mix of both! I'll remember that in the future though!