The world of insects is quite grand and extensive. It is possible to find hundreds of species that have traits that differ from their peers. In addition to this, a huge number of these are discovered every year. In this case, we refer to the pinacate, which is an insect of the coleopteran species that can be found in various parts of the world such as Mexico, the United States, Canada, among others. Although it is also possible to find some of these in regions where Spanish is spoken.
Believe it or not, this insect, despite its small size, It’s very important for the ecosystem and its existence has a great benefit. Of course, in recent years there has been a drop in appearances of this insect, which is why it is considered an endangered species. Next, we will show you the importance, eating habits and everything related to this insect of great relevance to the ecosystem in which it lives.
Now, we could define the pinacate as an insect of the polyphagous Coleoptera genus, which in most cases have a black shell and usually inhabit places where humidity is quite high. If we use the Spanish translator, we can say that the term refers to the Nahuatl indigenous language pinacatl, which means black beetle. They have around six legs, do not usually exceed 5 cm and an approximate of two hundred species.
It should be noted that there is a desert that is located in Sonora Mexico, which is called pinacate desert. If we use the Spanish translator, we can realize that it means black beetle desert, which alludes to the enormous number of this genus of beetles found in that part of Mexico.
What kind of animal is a pinacate?
On the other hand, you can find a huge number of these beetle species in different parts of the world. If we refer to the pinacate, this is a type of animal of the Tenebrionidae family and that belongs to the genus Coleoptera. The main features that can be noticed in this type of species is that they have a strong shell that helps them resist blows and falls from their predators. In addition to this, they usually bury themselves about 20 centimeters from the ground so as not to be detected and thus ensure their survival.
What are the characteristics of pinacates?
This insect of great importance for its ecosystem, has certain traits that make it stand out from the rest. Whether it’s their defense mechanisms against predators, their eating habits and even how they affect the environment in which they can be found. Next, we will show you the characteristics of the pinacates:
- They can walk and fly: They have a pair of wings under their armor that they can use to fly short distances. Although they are not excellent fliers due to factors such as their weight and the simple fact that they cannot control the direction they are going very well. That is why it is quite common to see how these insects impact surfaces in a very abrupt way, since they do not know how to land correctly.
- They usually walk in groups: This type of insect can be found in huge groups in times of abundant rain. They communicate with each other and when this period comes to an end, they are usually seen in less numerous numbers.
- They adopted the name from the Nahuatl language: These insects kept the name of pinacate, since in this indigenous language, it means black insect or beetle.
- They feel great attraction to light sources: Although they prefer to be in holes about 20 centimeters deep in complete darkness, they can be seen static when they sit in a very powerful light source. Unfortunately, in the vast majority of cases it is because they die due to the great heat emanating from the sun. In addition to the fact that the black color that these have only worsens the absorption of heat.
- They have a great defense mechanism: It is a rather unpleasant odor that they release when they feel an imminent danger near them, both by humans and by other large animals or insects. In fact, it works very well to scare away predators, since even after it has died, the scent remains just as pungent and can become stronger as it is sniffed.
- It usually feeds on corpses of other insects: When leaving the hole where they live, they can find dead insects, which will not hesitate to feed on them. All this regardless of whether it is one of the same species, since they look for any source of food so as not to risk being prey.
Why is the pinacate black?
Now, there is a huge number of factors that determine the reason why some insects are black. In this case it is the pinacate, which has the aforementioned hue when it reaches the adult stage and helps it camouflage itself from predators. They achieve this thanks to the fact that they spend a large part of their lives inside dark holes within which the sun’s rays do not penetrate very strongly.
Although this color is good for camouflage, the reality is that it gives you certain disadvantages throughout your life. One of the most outstanding is that they absorb heat more easily. The pinacates can withstand the heat, but when the seasons are not rainy, they dry up and end up dying. Since they prefer keep moisture in their bodies and they try to find the coolest areas on earth where they hide.
Why is the pinacate a nature reserve?
On the other hand, when we go to the country of Mexico, more specifically in Sonora, we will be able to meet the famous pinacate desert. Within this we can find a huge variety of species such as reptiles, birds, avocados and others. The reason why this nature reserve gets its name is due to the large number of pinacates that can be found in the area. In addition to this, it is used as a recreational center where you can find the history and evolution of the peaks or sierra de pinacate, the different species that inhabit it, among others.
What are the benefits of the existence of the pinacate?
The pinacate, like the vast majority of beetles, have an enormous number of benefits and they are of great importance. This within the field of health and the environment in which they live. Next we will show you some of the benefits of the existence of the pinacate:
- Helps control the overpopulation of certain species.
- It has great medicinal attributes, such as removing coughing, reducing fever, among others.
- They are very useful to maintain the ecosystem in which they are found.
What do pinacates eat?
Now, one of the issues that most often stands out when talking about this insect is eating habits. These are not usually very varied, since they do not usually leave their homes much and when they do, it is because the rainy season is approaching. These beetles feed on some species of plants and insects, this regardless of whether they are of the same species or not. In fact, the feeding of this type of beetle helps to control the overpopulation of other insects that are harmful to the environment in which they live and reproduce.