Ladybird on leaf

Beetles, bugs and skaters

Beetles are the largest group of insects, with over 300,000 known species. Of these, 4,000 occur in Britain. Some are very small, others are relatively large.

Most beetles can fly, but they spend much of their time on the ground or in low vegetation. They have colonised almost all habitats and exploit many different food sources. Beetles can be plant feeders, scavengers, predators or parasites. The larvae and, sometimes, adults of certain species can be serious pests. Conversely, some – such as ladybirds – are allies in the garden, consuming other insect pests.

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