Helophorus aequalis

    Description

    A very common water beetle, 4.5 to 6.3 mm length, it is all brown in colour with the zig-zag ridges on the thorax typical of the genus. Darker spots may be present on the elytra.

    Similar Species

    It is most similar to H. grandis which is also one of the larger Helophorus beetles. They can be separated by the size and shape of the 'teeth' at the end of the last abdominal segment - small and numerous in aequalis, larger and castellated in grandis.

    Identification difficulty
    ID guidance
    • 4.5mm - 6.3mm
    • intercalary stria present
    • elytral margin barely visible from below (not to be confused with the epipleur which is visible)
    • 'teeth' on last abdominal segment small and numerous (~15 over 0.5mm)
    Habitat

    Helophorus aequalis is nearly always found near water, but not necessarily in it.

    When to see it

    All year round, but more readily recorded in summer.

    Life History

    The larvae live in the water and are fierce predators.

    UK Status

    Widespread and frequent in Britain.

    VC55 Status

    Common in Leicestershire and Rutland.

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    Leicestershire & Rutland Map

    MAP KEY:

    Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
    Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

    UK Map