Bug Bites: Siuslaw Hairy-Necked Tiger Beetle
Tiger beetles run so fast while hunting that their eyes can’t keep up! They have to keep stopping to check where their prey is, then chase after it again.
- • Tiger beetles are the fastest insects on the planet!
- • Larvae reach out from burrows to ambush passing prey, while adults chase down and subdue their prey.
Siuslaw hairy-necked tiger beetle (Cicindela hirticollis siuslawensis) is known from Pacific Ocean beaches at the mouths of rivers from the central Washington coast south to Eureka, California. Specimens have also been collected from a variety of sites in Oregon. The species has been extirpated from most of its historic sites and is considered rare.
- • Degradation of habitat due to non-native invasive grasses and recreational use.
Surveys are needed to verify the current range of the species along the Oregon and Washington coast. In order to conserve this species, recreational and other human activities that will physically disturb the sandy beaches where populations are present should be discouraged or prohibited.
In recent years, removal of non-native grasses and dune restoration for the benefit of snowy plover has had the indirect benefit of expanding suitable habitat for C. h. siuslawensis.