Diversity and Ecology of Stag Beetles (Lucanidae)

  • Ta-I HuangEmail author
Part of the Zoological Monographs book series (ZM, volume 1)


The beetle family Lucanidae contains over 1200 described species worldwide, with the highest diversity found in Southeast Asia. Most species are saproxylic, with larvae feeding on deadwood at various stages of decomposition and contributing to the breakdown of this material. Female lucanids usually oviposit eggs either directly within decaying wood, at the soil-wood interface beneath logs, or in the soil. Larvae of lucanid beetles spend the majority of their life span living in decaying wood or other decomposing substrates, where they feed on materials rich in fungal biomass. In addition, adults of many lucanid beetles are highly dependent on living trees where either they can find sap as a food source or locate partners for mating. Relatively little is known about the biology, life history, or substrate associations of saproxylic stag beetles despite their striking morphology and popularity among entomologists and amateur insect collectors . In this chapter I discuss ecological niche partitioning among lucanid beetles, with a focus on the relatively well-studied fauna of Taiwan as a case study. I also review the importance of fungal associations to lucanid beetles and the role these insects play in wood decomposition.


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© This is a U.S. government work and its text is not subject to copyright protection in the United States; however, its text may be subject to foreign copyright protection.  2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Agriculture Division, DowDuPontTaipeiTaiwan

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