Rove Beetle

Cafius lithocharinus

Order: 

Coleoptera

Family: 

Staphylinidae

Cafius lithocharinus is one of the smaller of the Cafius species occupying the kelp wrack on local sandy beaches, ranging from 7.5mm to 9mm. C. lithocharinus is most common in early spring to early summer, foraging at night. Their distribution is similar to other Cafius, and even though they are all found in patches,  C. lithocharinus is particularly so. C. lithocharinus is commonly associated with other rove beetles. They are less robust than the larger Cafius species on the beach, and are easily distinguished by the golden patches at the ends of their elytra. Their diet consists of largely larval and adult flies along with smaller amphipods. Phoretic mites and nematodes can occur under their wings and elytra. The parasitic fungus Laboulbenia philonthi (described in Thaxter 1893) is not known to occur with them unlike C. canescens and C. seminitens. Similar research is applicable to these beetles as their congeneric counnterparts, though less is known about C. lithocharinus than the larger Cafius species.