Hercules Beetle Facts
Five groups that classify all living things
A group of animals within the animal kingdom
A group of animals within a pylum
A group of animals within a class
A group of animals within an order
A group of animals within a family
Most widely used name for this species
The name of the animal in science
The place where something is found
|Central and South America|
What kind of foods the animal eats
How long (L) or tall (H) the animal is
|4cm - 17cm (1.5in - 6.7in)|
|Number Of Species:|
The total number of recorded species
The average time the animal lives for
|3 - 5 months|
The likelihood of the animal becoming extinct
The colour of the animal's coat or markings
|Black, Brown, Green, Blue, White, Yellow|
The protective layer of the animal
The preferred food of this animal
The specific area where the animal lives
|Average Litter Size:|
The average number of babies born at once
The food that the animal gains energy from
|Decaying wood, Fruit, Leaves|
Other animals that hunt and eat the animal
|Bats, Rats, Birds|
Characteristics unique to this animal
|Hard, armoured shell and horn-like pincers|
Hercules Beetle Location
Map of South America
The Hercules beetle is one of the largest species of beetle in the world, and is natively found in the jungles of South America. The Hercules beetle is the largest and most well known of all of the rhinoceros beetles, a group of large beetles that are closely related to the famous scarab beetle.
The Hercules beetle is found throughout the tropical jungles and rainforests of Central and South America, where the Hercules beetle spends the majority of its time foraging through the leaf-litter on the forest floor in search of something to eat. The fallen debris also helps to hide this enormous insect as it moves about.
There are thirteen known species of Hercules beetle found in the jungles of South America and the Hercules beetle was named for its sheer size as some males have been known to reach nearly 7 inches in length. Although it is quite rare for these beetles to get quite so big, the average adult Hercules beetle is usually between four and fifteen centimetres long depending on the species.
The most distinctive feature of the Hercules beetle has to be the enormous horn-like pincers which protrude from the forehead of the males. These horns can grow longer than the Hercules beetle's body and are mainly used for solving disputes with other male Hercules beetles. Female Hercules beetles do not have horns but their bodies are thought to be larger, but shorter than their male counterparts.
The Hercules beetle is an omnivorous animal but it;'s diet both in its larvae and adult stages, is primarily made up of decaying plant matter. Rotting wood is the favoured meal of the Hercules beetle, along with fruits and other plant matter and the occasional small insect.
The Hercules beetle is said to be the strongest creature on earth for its size, able to carry 850 times its own body weight but these enormous insects are still hunted by numerous animals throughout the jungles of Central and South America. Bats, rats and birds are the main predators of the Hercules beetle along with reptiles and omnivorous mammals.
The larval stage of the Hercules beetle will last one to two years, with the larva growing up to 4.5 inches in length and weighing up to 120 grams. Much of the life of the Hercules beetle larva is spent tunnelling through its primary food source of rotting wood. After the larval period, transformation into a pupa, and moulting occur, with the Hercules beetle then emerging as an adult.
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First Published: 2nd August 2010, Last Updated: 8th November 2019
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