Rove beetles may be funny-looking, but they’re your friends in the garden: The beneficial decomposers often hold the tip of their abdomen bent upward, as if preparing to sting.
More than 1,300 species are native to North America.
Most species scavenge decaying organic materials and are beneficial decomposers in the ecosystem. Many species are predators of aphids, fly eggs, maggots, mites, nematodes, slugs, snails, and springtails, making the rove beetle a valuable ally in the garden. A few species parasitize cabbage maggots and other fly larvae.
Adults are slender, elongated, quick-moving insects, 1?10 to 1 inch long, with stubby wing covers extending only over the first three segments on the abdomen. They are usually brown or black; some are shiny, others have dense hairs, and a few species have bright markings. Most are active at night. Larvae resemble adults but are wingless.
Getting Them on Your Side
` Maintain permanent beds and plantings in your garden to protect overwintering adults.
` Interplant with cover crops or mulch planting beds.
` Make stone or plank walks in the garden to provide shelter.