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160621 swollen-thighed beetle (1)

If you thought rugby players had well-developed thighs, take a look at this guy. He must work out at the gym every day of his life. Meet Oedemera nobilis, otherwise known as the Swollen-thighed beetle or, sometimes, the Thick-legged or Fat-legged flower beetle. Once seen, never forgotten … unless you see the female, whose shapely pins are nothing like the male’s.

160621 swollen-thighed beetle (2)

They’re a wonderfully vibrant green, often with a tinge of blue or gold in their metallic sheen, and they’re particularly abundant at this time of year. Though they feed on the nectar and pollen of a wide range of flower species, I’ve often found them immersing themselves in dandelion flowers, to emerge sprinkled in yellow pollen.