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And I'm going to have to disagree here as well! The Devil's Coach-horse is larger and a rather different shape, with a much thicker 'neck'.
Entomologist and biological recorder
The closest I could get was in Chinery on p 262- something like Stenus or Bledius sp?
Hi Peter. Chinery's books are wonderful things, and can usually help you identify insects to the nearest family, but they're not much help for identifying staphylinid beetles to species I'm afraid! There are over 1,000 species in Britain, and most require microscopic examination to be identified fully - often they also need dissection. Understandably, Chinery only illustrates a small number of them.
I'm confident that this one is in genus Rugilus, the shape is very distinctive. I'm not sure which copy of Chinery you have, but in mine the genus Rugilus isn't included at all, hence your difficulty in finding this one. There are seven species in genus Rugilus, usually found in plant litter in grasslands and wetlands.
To see a wider selection of staphylinids have a look at the Kerbtier website:
But even that only shows a small proportion of the total number of species, and will include some species that aren't in Britain. For information on taking the study of this group further see Mark Telfer's website:
This really is one group where identification from photos is always going to be limited, and getting to genus is quite an achievement!
thank you. Certainly looks like a complex subject and good to hear we can narrow it down to genus.
Thanks for the links- the Mark Telfer site is really interesting, might at my pan-species list to it!
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