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Ranzania splendens
Range:  southeast Africa
Size:  30 - 45 mm

Of the cetoniine scarabs that live in Africa, Ranzania splendens is perhaps one of the most striking in color scheme.  The pronotum is a brilliant iridescent green which changes in hue depending upon the angle from which it is viewed.  The elytra are very white with a bold black stripe near the lower margin of each.  The clypeus of the male is greatly lengthened into a wide, flat structure which somewhat resembles a duck's bill.  The very long legs are of the same iridescent green as the pronotum.  The scutellum (the V-shaped plate between the pronotum and elytra) is large and triangular.  Another species of the genus, R. bertolonii, looks similar to R. splendens except that the clypeus of the male has three distinctive points projecting from the front.

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A pair of R. splendens.  This species, with its bold colors and exaggerated physical features, is considered by many to be among the most beautiful and unusual of all the African cetoniinae.  Under magnification, the elytra can be seen to have some faint blue tones. Ranzania is only mildly sexually dimorphic, with both sexes being of similar size and coloration.

Photo courtesy of Roman Kocina.

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Ranzania splendens (pair) - Image  Roman Kocina

 
Ranzania splendens (male) - Image  Roman Kocina
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A close up of the male R. splendens.  Note the great extension of the clypeus into a flattened, beak-like shape.  A feature of the elytra that is unique to cetoniines is that that they can be closed almost completely over the abdomen again after the flight wings are extended.  This is possible because of some anatomical modifications not found in other scarab groups.

Photo courtesy of Roman Kocina.

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