Calosoma (Australodrepa) schayeri Erichson, 1842

Calosoma schayeri Erichson, 1842: 122 (type: Tasmania, ?)
Calosoma Curtisi Hope, 1845: 104 (type: Adelaide; Hope Department Entomology, Oxford University, Oxford)
Calosoma grandipenne Castelnau, 1867: 13 (type: Melbourne; Museum of Victoria, Melbourne)
Calosoma schayeri Breuning, 1927: 159
Calosoma (Australodrepa) grandipennis Lapouge, 1932: 408
Calosoma (Australodrepa) schayeri Lapouge, 1932: 408
Australodrepa schayeri Jeannel, 1940: 74
Calosoma (Calosoma) cyaneoventre Mandl, 1954: 159 (type: Neue Holland; Naturhistorischen Museum Wien).

Length 20-26 mm. In most cases, C. schayeri is easily identified by the stocky shape and by the color of the upper body golden-green uniform and by the ventral side reddish-brown with faint metallic luster. Moreover, in comparison with C. oceanicum, it always presents a stronger and deeper punctuation of the striae, easily detectable with the unaided eye, and the articles of maxillary palps are shorter. In the males the basal article of the front legs is hairless or at most very scarcely hairy and the aedeagus has a relatively short apex and a ligula with a truncated end.
In 1954 Mandl described Calosoma (Calosoma) cyaneoventre, based on a specimen ♀ generically coming from Australia ( "Neue Holland"). In the original description, it has been compared to C. schayeri, of which, in our opinion, most probably is an individual variation. In fact, it should differ from C. schayeri for several minor characteristics (less protruding mental tooth, sculpture of elytra more pronounced) and for the color of the ventral side metallic blue-green with purple reflexion, instead of reddish-brown with faint metallic luster, but all these characteristics can also be found, although rarely, in single individuals inside the typical populations.
C. schayeri occupies whole Australia, except its far northern part, and whole Tasmania (including the islands of Bass Strait).

Examined specimens and literature’s data :
Australia. New South Wales: Tamworth (SB), Cabramatta (EM, SB), Ballina (EM); Capital Territory: Camberra ACT (SB), Tarcoon (Breuning, 1927: 160); Northern Territory: Yuendumu 650 m (EM), Alice Springs (SB) Barkly, Tennant Creek; Central Desert (http://spatial.ala.org.au); Queensland: Central Queensland (SB), Gayndah (Breuning, 1927: 160), Paroo river (Breuning, 1927: 160), Richmond (VV); Townsnville (Hawkeswood, 1992: 5); Charters Towers (http://spatial.ala.org.au); South Australia: Ganthaume bay (Breuning, 1927: 159), Adelaide (Breuning, 1927: 159), Coopers Creek (Breuning, 1927: 159), Finke river (Breuning, 1927: 159); Victoria: South Gippsland, Wilsons Promontory (http://spatial.ala.org.au); Doncaster (MNHN); West Australia: Fremantle (Breuning, 1927: 159), Perth (Jeannel, 1940: 74); Broome; Exmouth; Carnarvon, Middalya; Wiluna; Shark Bay (http://spatial.ala.org.au); Tasmania: Flinders island (Breuning, 1927: 160), King island (Breuning, 1927: 160), Hobart (http://spatial.ala.org.au)

Notes: The species has been named after Adolphus Schayer that lived and collected insects in North West Tasmania between 1831 and 1843, when he worked for the Van Diemen's Land Company.
Calosoma schayeri easily adapts to different habitats, as forest and urban gardens. It is attracted to street lights even in Melbourne and other Australian cities. Brightly lit shopping centres are also frequently the target of crowds of these beetles.
It is winged and, beeing a caterpillar feeder, its populations increase dramatically in response to abundant nuctuid larvae (armyworms) induced by favourable seasons. Active individuals were captured during the southern wet season from September to May.

Calosoma (Australodrepa) shayeri
Erichson, 1842
Australia, New South Wales, Tamworth, 15.11.58
Calosoma (Australodrepa) shayeri
Erichson, 1842
Australia, New South Wales, Tamworth, 15.11.58
Calosoma (Australodrepa) shayeri
Erichson, 1842
(sub Calosoma shayeri var australe Hope)
Australia, Central Queensland, Doncaster
(coll. Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle, Paris)
Calosoma (Australodrepa) shayeri
Erichson, 1842
(sub Calosoma shayeri var australe Hope)
Australia, Central Queensland, Doncaster
(coll. Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle, Paris)
Calosoma (Australodrepa) shayeri
Erichson, 1842
Australia, Central Queensland, I.2002, Local collector


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