Pseudolucanus barbarossa

Pseudolucanus barbarossa (= Lucanus barabarossa)

Pseudolucanus barbarossa (= Lucanus barabarossa) is a beautiful black beetle that differs from the stag beetle (Lucanus cervus) by its not so big jaws and by the comb of the antennas made of 6 teeth, not just 4. There is sexual dimorphism: males are roughly 4,5 cm long and their head and jaws are really developed, whilst females are smaller, roughly 3 cm, with normal head and jaws that fit into the oval shape of the body. The top wings are black, almost without the reddish shade of the stag beetle. The specific name barbarossa (= blond beard) refers to the hair that peeps out between the labial palpi. The images on top and down display male individuals, while the image on the left is a female with not that big jaws.

The larvae of Pseudolucanus barbarossa spend years into the trunk of planifolia, mostly green oaks. Therefore, they love mature forests with aged trees and dead trunks. On the other hand, the adults live just for several days in July and August. The adults are attracted by the light.

Pseudolucanus barbarossa is one endemic species of Iberia and north of Africa. In the district of Bages, where the distribution area of Pseudolucanus barbarossa overlaps that of Lucanus cervus, it is found in Montserrat and in the area of Lluçà, in Santpedor.

[photos Jordi Badia (1st), Oriol Oms (2nd) and Florenci Vallès (3rd and 4th)]