Over 2,500 species are distributed worldwide
Ground beetles are usually a shiny black, or metallic blue/green colour. Their legs are strong and stout, enabling them to travel at speed over rough ground. When alarmed, ground beetles spray a foul-smelling liquid from their abdomens. Most ground beetles cannot fly since their wing cases are fused together to form a shield that protects their bodies. The shape and colour of ground beetle larvae can vary considerably between species, but they are usually long, brown and segmented with prominent jaws.
Ground beetles are extremely useful in the garden for helping to control plant pest populations, since both the larval and adult stages are voracious predators of many soft-bodied pests such as small slugs and snails.
Food and Habitat:
Adults and larvae both feed on invertebrates, slugs, snails and carrion. Some smaller species will also feed on plant pests such as aphids. Ground beetles will shelter under mulch or in shallow burrows during the day.
Log piles and leaf litter provide ideal sheltered locations for ground beetles.