Wonderful Wacky Water Critters
Predaceous Diving Beetle
This beetle is one of the most common of all aquatic beetles. The diving beetle larva is sometimes called the "water tiger" or "dragon of the pond" because of its immense appetite. It will even eat its own kind. Both the adult and the larva wait in ambush for their favorite meal of insects, leeches, snails, tadpoles and fish. (They're not very picky!) The diving beetle has strong, sharp jaws that are used for defense and to catch prey. Its hollow jaws are like hypodermic needles. The beetle can shoot digestive enzymes into its victim, predigesting the food before sucking it up. Since the beetle does not have gills, it has to come to the surface for air. Watch how it does this.