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The Bessbug (Odontotaenius disjunctus) beetle is perfect for classroom studies. These common beetles are also known as patent-leather beetles, Betsy bugs and horned passalus. The adults are 1–1.5 inches long with golden “fringe” on the middle legs, pronotum and on the antennae. The common name patent-leather beetle comes from the shiny, black exoskeleton. Although they have wings, they fly very rarely. Instead, they slowly amble in search of food within rotting hardwood logs.


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