Timarcha tenebricosa (Fabricius, 1775)

Taxonomy: Polyphaga > Chrysomeloidea > Chrysomelidae > Timarcha > Timarcha tenebricosa

Common name: 

Bloody-nosed Beetle


Timarcha tenebricosa
Timarcha tenebricosa


Size: 11-18mm
Basic colour: Blue-black
Pattern colour: None
Number of spots: None
Pronotoum: As basic colour
Leg colour: As basic colour
Confusion species: Timarcha goettingensis

The largest British chrysomelid, known for exuding a drop of red fluid from the mouth when alarmed.


Status: Not threatened, though may be declining in eastern midland England.
Habitat: Various, mainly open, especially on free-draining soils.
Host plant: Bedstraws (Galium), crosswort (Cruciata laevipes), woodruffs (Asperula) and madders (Rubia)
Overwintering: Adults can survive for 14 months or more, and so can be found in all months.
Food: Adults and larvae feed on leaves and stems of bedstraws
Other notes: Duller than T. goettingensis with random, dense, tiny punctures. Pronotum constricts more sharply after rounded hind-angles than in T. goettingensis.


Oxford, G., Oxford, R. & Warwick, S. (2013). Timarcha tenebricosa (Fabricius) (Chrysomelidae) confirmed in VC 65 north-west Yorkshire. The Coleopterist 22(2): 83.

Distribution (may take a minute to appear)