Journal of Insect Behavior

, Volume 18, Issue 3, pp 305–312 | Cite as

Diurnal Tiger Beetles (Coleoptera: Cicindelidae) Capture Prey Without Sight

  • John J. Riggins
  • W. Wyatt Hoback


Although much research has examined the process of prey capture by tiger beetles, an underlying assumption in this work is that tiger beetles are principally, or even exclusively, visual predators. Because this assumption is untested, we performed a series of experiments on four diurnally active tiger beetles in the Genus Cicindela. Individual beetles were placed in chambers in complete darkness and allowed to forage on apterous Drosophila for 6 h. Contrary to expectations, adults of all tested species captured more than 90% of prey items. These results show that other modalities can be used by tiger beetles during prey capture. Beyond potentially providing an explanation for observed night activity in tiger beetle species, the significance of these findings lies in the need to test underlying assumptions of even well-studied organisms.


Cicindelidae predation prey capture nonvisual cues 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, Inc. 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of BiologyUniversity of Nebraska at KearneyKearney
  2. 2.Department of EntomologyUniversity of ArkansasFayetteville
  3. 3.Department of Biology, Bruner Hall of ScienceUniversity of Nebraska at KearneyKearney

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