Canon EOS 350D, Close-up lens 250D, 1/25sec, F/5.6, ISO-400
Location: Sunnemo, Sweden, Europe
Date: June 10/2011
Burying Beetle & Phoretic Mites
The Phoretic mites are not parasitic on the beetle, but are carnivorous, eating fly larvae that could be a threat to the beetle larvae. They use the beetle as transport, so we have a good symbiotic relationship, here.
Nicrophorus vespilloides is a burying beetle described by Johann Friedrich Wilhelm Herbst in 1783.
Besides the many interesting behaviors this beetle exhibits it is of interest because in North America it is restricted to Sphagnum bogs and marshes whereas in Europe and throughout the Palearctic it is found in open forest habitats. The restriction of N. vespilloides to bogs in the North America has been attributed to competition with its congener, N. defodiens which in this area is found in forest habitats. N. vespilloides reproduces exclusively in bogs in North America and is never found in adjacent (<100 meters) forested habitat in the Mer Bleue bog area near Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.