Diving beetle

REDUCED_NZ-Ento-Soc-Insect-Playing-Cards_Diving-Beetlel REDCommon name: Diving beetle

Scientific name: Rhantus plantaris

Māori name:

Size:

Habitat:

 

Diving beetles exist all over the world, as the name suggests, they can swim. Insects don’t have lungs like mammals do. Instead, they breathe in through openings along their sides (called “spiracles”). But the diving beetle’s approach to swimming underwater is the same as ours. Like taking a deep breath, or attaching an oxygen tank, these beetles are able to hold a bubble of air on their undersides. Have you ever seen how air bubbles [example] which are covered in thick hairs. Diving beetles have something like this – their undersides are covered in hair.

Whle they swim, the beetles can take air from the bubble and, when it comes close to runnin out, they go back to the surface to refill it.

 

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