On a golden flower next to the softball field
I've been seeing this beetle every, very often on goldenrod as the name suggests, but on all sorts of other flowers too.
6mm long. Came to black light trap. (live oak/chaparral habitat). Genus ID by v belov @ BugGuide.
~15mm length. Came to black light (live oak/chaparral habitat). ID by v belov @ BugGuide.
The soldier beetles, Cantharidae, are relatively soft-bodied, straight-sided beetles, related to the Lampyridae or firefly family, but unable to produce light. They are cosmopolitan in distribution. One common British species is bright red, reminding people of the red coats of soldiers, hence the common name. A secondary common name is leatherwing, obtained from the texture of the wing covers.