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Country of origin

New Zealand

Pericoptus truncatus

(Ngungutawa, sand scarab beetle)

Pericoptus truncatus : Fabricius, 1775)

Pericoptus truncatus or the ngungutawa is a large sand scarab beetle. It is native to New Zealand and is found in dunes from Canterbury northwards.

The adult spends daylight buried in the sand, emerging at night to fly noisily around in search of mates and food. The trails it leaves in the sand are quite obvious early in the morning, as it also spends much time walking around.

The female lays eggs deep in the sand and the large white grubs can often be found in the sand under driftwood, though they feed on roots of dune plants.

adult male
adult female
large grub
medium grub
Small Grub
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Taxonomic Classification

  • Kingdom: ANIMALIA
  • Phylum: ARTHROPODA
  • Class:
  • Order:
  • Family: SCARABAEIDAE
  • Genus: PERICOPTUS
  • Species: P. TRUNCATUS

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