Over 300,000 species of beetles live on the earth and over 12,000 beetles live in the Africa. Beetles have a hard shell and four wings. Some beetles cause a lot of damage by eating crops, wood and food. Others help us by pollinating crops or eating harmful insects.

Fast Facts about Beetles

1. Beetles are the common name for an order of insects called Coleoptera.

2. The name coleoptera comes from the Greek words koleos, meaning “sheath” (cover) and pteron, meaning “wing”, so “sheathed wing”. Beetles have two pairs of wings, the front pair, called “elytra”, are hard, thick sheath or shell-like and  protect the more normal rear pair of wings which are used for flying.

3. Beetles come in a lot of colours. Beetles can be bright yellow, green, red, orange or purple. They can have stripes or spots

4. Beetles are one of the world’s oldest animals. They have been here for over 300,000 years.

Also read: 10 Amazing Animal Facts (Mosquito)

5. Beetles come in a lot of colors. Beetles can be bright yellow, green, red, orange or purple. They can have stripes or spots.

6. Beetles are incredibly versatile and are found nearly everywhere on Earth except for the very cold polar regions.

7. Some bigger species of beetle have even been known to eat small birds or mammals but the majority of beetles play a vital role in the ecosystems they live in because they feed mainly on debris from plants and animals.

8. Ladybirds (ladybugs) are one type of beetle that help to control pest populations by feeding on aphids that would otherwise eat vegetable plants.

9. Dung beetles are very important in many ecosystems because they feed on animal droppings, so are recycling waste material and speeding up the circulation of the nutrients back into the food chain.

10. Humans eat more beetles than any other kind of insect. There are over 300 species known to be eaten, with most of these eaten at the larvae stage!