Journal of Threatened Taxa | | 26 June 2022 | 14(6): 21324–21326



ISSN 0974-7907 (Online) | ISSN 0974-7893 (Print)

#7590 | Received 24 July 2021 | Final received 25 August 2021 | Finally accepted 21 June 2022




New distribution records of two species of metallic ground beetles of the genus Chlaenius (Coleoptera: Carabidae: Chlaeniini) from the Western Ghats, India


Duraikannu Vasanthakumar 1  & Erich Kirschenhofer 2


1 Zoological Survey of India (ZSI), Western Regional Centre (WRC), Pune, Maharashtra 411044, India.

2 Otto Elsner Gasse 10-12, 2080 Perchtoldsdorf, Austria.

1 (corresponding author), 2




Editor: Anonymity requested.   Date of publication: 26 June 2022 (online & print)


Citation: Vasanthakuma, D. & E. Kirschenhofer (2022). New distribution records of two species of metallic ground beetles of the genus Chlaenius (Coleoptera: Carabidae: Chlaeniini) from the Western Ghats, India. Journal of Threatened Taxa 14(6): 21324–21326.


Copyright: © Vasanthakumar & Kirschenhofer 2022. Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.  JoTT allows unrestricted use, reproduction, and distribution of this article in any medium by providing adequate credit to the author(s) and the source of publication.


Funding: The work is based on the annual research programme of Zoological Survey of India, WRC, Pune (Ministry of Environment,

                 Forest and Climate Change, Govt. of India).


Competing interests: The authors declare no competing interests.


Acknowledgements: The first author (DV) wish to thank the Director, Zoological Survey of India, Kolkata and the Officer-In-Charge, Western Regional Centre, Pune, for the facilities provided. Thanks are also due to all the staff of the Western Regional Centre, ZSI, Pune, for their constant encouragement.




Chlaenius Bonelli, 1810 is one of the largest and taxonomically most diverse genera of Carabidae. There are approximately 855 species and 62 subgenera of Chlaenius in the world (Lorenz 2005) and new species are continually being described (Anichtchenko 2018). The beetles belonging to this genus are popularly known as ‘metallic ground beetles’ because of their vivid metallic colour of most species (Hegde & Manthen 2017). They emit some chemical compounds (m-Cresol, 2,5-dimethylphenol, 3,5-dimethylphenol) as defensive secretions (Schildknecht et al. 1968a,b; Balestrazzi et al. 1985). The representatives of this genus are found in all zoogeographical regions of the world (Bousquet 2012).

While analysing the earlier collections of carabid beetles of the Western Regional Centre of Zoological Survey of India, we came across two unidentified specimens, which on examination turned out to be Chlaenius species—Chlaenius (Chlaeniellus) cookei Andrewes, 1933 and Chlaenius (Pseudochlaeniellus) puncticollis Dejean, 1826.  Perusal of published works on the Chlaenius species of India (Andrewes 1930, 1933; Saha 1986, 1992, 1995; Saha et al. 1991; Anichtchenko & Kirschenhofer 2017; Chanu & Swaminathan 2017; Hegde & Manthen 2017) revealed that these two species have not been reported from the Western Ghats region earlier, and hence our findings represent new distribution records. The specimens were set-pinned, labelled, and assigned registration numbers. Identification was based on the literature (Andrewes 1933; Jedlička 1964). The photographs were taken with Leica EZ4HD stereo zoom microscope.


Chlaenius (Chlaeniellus) cookei Andrewes, 1933

Chlaenius deserti Jedlička, 1964.

Material examined: Ent-1/3595, 01.x.2016, 1 male, collected at light, near Gagangiri mountain, Kolhapur District, Maharashtra (16.5380 N & 73.8238 E), coll. V.D. Hegde & party.

Diagnostic characters: Head metallic green, with small scattered punctures; antennomeres 1–3 light brown, remaining antennomeres dark brown. Pronotum wider than long, rounded at sides, punctate pubescent, metallic green, with narrow lateral margins brown; basal margin longer than apical margin; apical angles rounded; basal angles obtuse. Elytra dark green, with a small, oblique, narrow pale spot on each side, reaching apex as reported by Andrewes (1933) (Image 1).

Distribution: India (New Delhi, Rajasthan, and Western Ghats region of Maharashtra (new record)); Pakistan (Azadbaksh & Rafi 2017).

Remarks: This species was originally described by Andrewes (1933) from New Delhi. Jedlička (1964) described Chlaenius deserti from Barmer, Rajasthan which was then synonymised as C. (Chlaeniellus) cookei by Kirschenhofer (2003).


Chlaenius (Pseudochlaeniellus) puncticollis Dejean, 1826

Material examined: Ent-1/3596, 13.vii.2017, 1 male, Near Tamhini, Pune District, Maharashtra) (18.450 N & 73.416 E), coll. Shripad Manthen.

Diagnostic characters: Head metallic green, moderately punctate. Pronotum also metallic green, very coarsely punctate, densely at the base and less densely in anterior half of pronotum; lateral grooves narrow; basal angles right. Elytra metallic green, with narrow yellow lateral band, strictly limited to two external intervals; apical part of band narrow; elytral striae fine, finely punctured; all intervals flat (Image 2).

Distribution: India (Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, West Bengal, and Western Ghats region of Maharashtra (new record)); Afganistan, Pakistan, Iran, Nepal, Myanmar, and Sri Lanka (Anichtchenko & Kirschenhofer 2017).


For images – click here for full PDF




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