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Dynastes tityus (page 2)
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Another male D. tityus.  This insect is very easy to handle, and does not object to being picked up as do some other rhinoceros beetle species.  Chalcosoma caucasus, for example, will lash out defensively with its sharp tarsi (claws) when touched.  Although some rhinoceros beetles have sharp structures located at the junction of the thorax and elytra which can pierce through skin, these insects are really quite harmless to humans and other animals, and are among the most amazing in appearance of all insect groups.
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Dynastes tityus (male) - Image  C. Campbell

 
Dynastes tityus (male) - Image  C. Campbell
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A close-up of the male pictured above.  Note the fine, light coloured "hair" that is present at the junction of the head and thorax, as well as on the lower surface of the thoracic horn.  Some species of the related genus Golofa have these same hair-like bristles (called "setae") on the undersides of their thoracic horns as well.  Although setae are generally used as tactile structures, their presence on the horns of dynastine scarabs may possibly serve more to augment the horns as display structures.  The thorax of this species is two-toned, unlike that of the much larger D. hercules, which has a solidly black thorax.
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A mating pair of D. tityus.  The sense of smell is very important to scarab beetles, and males locate mates by detecting pheromones emitted by the females.  Soon after mating, the female seeks out a decaying log or stump in which to deposit her eggs.  The resultant larvae feed on the decomposing wood for months before finally pupating and emerging as adults.
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Dynastes tityus (pair) - Image  C. Campbell

 
Dynastes tityus - Image  C. Campbell
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Twelve Dynastes tityus beetles.  All of these are of the same parentage, and emerged between late 1998 and early 1999.  The substrate should consist of ground up, decaying hardwood and old, molding leaves from broadleaf deciduous trees.  This substrate should be kept reasonably moist, but not too damp.
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