Kugelann's ground beetle (Poecilus kugelanni)

Kugelann's ground beetle
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Kugelann's ground beetle fact file

Kugelann's ground beetle description

GenusPoecilus (1)

This ground beetle has a stout body, with long legs, and typically has a coppery coloured fore-body and green wing cases (elytra). In some rare cases it is totally black (2).

Pterostichus kugelanni.
Length: 12-14 mm (2)

Kugelann's ground beetle biology

This beetle is thought to have a two-year lifecycle; it breeds in spring and summer, and individuals overwinter twice, first as larvae and then as adults (3). Although the diet of this species is a mystery, it is thought that both adults and larvae are predatory, like many species of ground beetle (3). Adults have full wings, but their powers of dispersal are not known (3); they are found under stones and amongst plants, and have been recorded in April, May and July (5).


Kugelann's ground beetle range

Formerly widespread in England from Nottinghamshire to south Wales and the south coast of England (3). The range subsequently declined, however; since 1970, the species has been recorded from just five sites in the New Forest, 3 sites in Devon and two in Dorset (4). In Europe, the species occurs in the south and west, from Spain to Hungary (3).

You can view distribution information for this species at the National Biodiversity Network Atlas.

Kugelann's ground beetle habitat

Inhabits heathlands where there is sandy or gravelly soil and wet patches (3), as well as sand pits (5).


Kugelann's ground beetle status

Classified as Endangered in Great Britain (3).


Kugelann's ground beetle threats

The reasons for the decline of this beetle are thought to include unsuitable heathland management, and the widespread loss and fragmentation of this habitat in Britain (3).


Kugelann's ground beetle conservation

Kugelann's ground beetle is included in the UK Biodiversity Action Plan (UK BAP) as a priority species (3); a Species Action Plan has therefore been published in order to guide its conservation (3). This plan aims to maintain all known populations, and establish at least five new populations within the former range before the year 2010 (3).

There may be further information about this species available via the National Biodiversity Network Atlas.

Find out more

For more on English Nature's Species Recovery Programme see:



Information authenticated by Dr Martin Luff of the School of Biology, University of Newcastle, with the support of the British Ecological Society:



In beetles and earwigs, the hard fore wings. They are held aloft when the insect flies, and are often coloured or patterned.
Stage in an animal's lifecycle after it hatches from the egg. Larvae are typically very different in appearance to adults; they are able to feed and move around but usually are unable to reproduce.


  1. National Biodiversity Network Species Dictionary (September 2002) http://www.nhm.ac.uk/nbn/
  2. Lindroth, C. H. (1974) Handbooks for the identification of British insects. Volume IV. Part 2: Coleoptera, Carabidae. The Royal Entomological Society of London, London.
  3. UK BAP Species Action Plan (September 2002) http://www.ukbap.org.uk
  4. Hymen, P. S. and Parsons, M.S. (1992) A review of the scarce and threatened Coleoptera of Great Britain: Part 1. JNCC, Peterborough.
  5. Luff, M. (2004) Pers. comm.

Image credit

Kugelann's ground beetle  
Kugelann's ground beetle

© Roger Key

Dr Roger Key
Tel: +44 (0) 1845 567 292


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