Phylum Arthropoda
Class Insecta
Order Coleoptera
Family Staphylinidae
Common Name Rove Beetle
Distinguishing Characteristics
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Geographic Distribution:
  • The genus Brathnius (Coleoptera; Stahylinidae; Omaliinae) occurs on both coasts and throughout inland regions such as the Great Lakes and southern Appalachians in North America (1).
  • Species of Staphylinidae have been studied in Japan and Argentina (1).

  • Habitats:
  • Larvae and adults live in wet organic debris along streams and ponds but often feed in habitats with rough sediments (2).
  • Females lay eggs in areas where soil showed visible water in spaces (2).

  • Life History:
  • The genus Brathinus undergoes final molting into adulthood in the mid-summer months especially in the southern Appalachian region (1).
  • Erichsonius pusio has an univoltine life cycle (2).
  • Oviposit for E. pusio eggs occurs in June (2).

  • Feeding Ecology:
    Staphylinidae are primarily predators but are not discriminatory feeders, they have been seen scavenging and consuming detritus (3).

    Food Web Roles:
  • Terrestrial predation is an important means of exporting nutrients into riparian vegetation from the water column (3).
  • Nematodes are an important food source for Staphylinidae larva (2).
  • In an Oregon 3rd order stream, Diptera larvae were a favored prey of Staphylinidae of almost 1/3 the ingested food. Sand and gravel bars were important feeding habitat for this predator-prey interaction to occur (4).
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    (1) Peck, S.B. A review of the Distribution and Habitats of North American Brathinus (Coleoptera; Staphylinidae; Omaliine). 1975. Psyche. 82: 59 66.

    (2) Schmidt, D.A. Description of the Immatures of Erichsonius alumnus frank and E. Pusio (Horn)(Coleoptera: Staphylinidae). 1996. The Coleopterists Bulletin. 50: 205- 215

    (3) Paetzold, A., C.J. Schubert, K. Tockner. Aquatic Terrestrial Linkages along a Braided-River: Riparian Arthropods Feeding on Aquatic Insects. 2005. Ecosystems. 8: 748 759

    (4) Hering, D. Riparian Beetles (Coleoptera) along a Small Stream in the Oregon Coast range and Their Interactions with the Aquatic Environment. 1998. The Coleopterists Bulletin. 52: 161 -170