views updated

Lycidae (net-winged beetles; subclass Pterygota, order Coleoptera) Family of brightly coloured, distasteful beetles, 5–20 mm long, which are often mimicked by harmless insects. The elytra have pronounced longitudinal ridges. The pronotum is expanded and ridged, covering most of the head. The antennae are long and thick, often serrate or pectinate, and placed close together on the head. The eyes are protuberant. Some are sexually dimorphic, with larviform females. Larvae are usually found in dead trees. Their antennae are much reduced. Both adults and larvae are predatory. There are 3000 species, mostly tropical.