Tonight when I was about to leave for a trip to the grocery store, I noticed a Palo Verde beetle in my driveway. I’ve seen these insects countless times during my decades in Arizona. However, this is the first one that has shown up at my current location. I thought I should shoot some video of it to share, as I know this beetle would be something of a novelty to those who live outside the regions where they can be found.
Seeing one of these really brings back memories of my aunt’s old house in Paradise Valley. I think I saw more of them there than any other place I’ve ever been. I encountered plenty of other interesting animals there as well, including kangaroo rats, owls, and Sonoran Desert toads.
For those of you interested on more information on these beetles, here is the Wikipedia entry for Palo Verde beetles. While I am loathe to include a Wikipedia link as my source of additional information on anything, it was actually one of the better links I found on the internet regarding Palo Verde beetles. Much of what I ran across, including this one at the University of Arizona looked like old Geocities pages. By comparison, they make Wikipedia look like the Library of Congress.
Update: An hour or so after posting this video and blog, I was working in my home office/studio when I heard a dog barking somewhere outside. After a while you come to know all the familiar barks in the neighborhood, however I couldn’t place this one. It continued for a bit so I finally got up to check. Why didn’t the barking sound familiar? It was my dog, Angel, who has probably barked only a total of 10 times in the nearly two years I have owned her. She honestly barks so infrequently that I didn’t even initially recognize it when I heard it. She has barked the least of any dog I have ever known.
Anyway, when I went out in my back yard with a flashlight to see what the deal was, Angel was bouncing up and down and batting at something on the ground with her paws, as boxers tend to do. Clearly there was something living that she was toying with, and she seemed to be having a great time doing it. I was thinking it was probably one of the geckos that hang around our back patio. But as I got closer, I saw that it was indeed a Palo Verde beetle. I don’t know if it was the same one or another one, but that’s what it was. I finally managed to get Angel to leave it alone and then head back inside.
Well, a couple hours after that, I needed to get a CD out of my car so I headed out front to do so. As I came to the gate of my front courtyard, what did I see? A Palo Verde beetle sitting right on the gate latch. I kid you not. I had to pick him up and move him in order to open the latch, and he was not very pleased about it.
Seeing what’s occurred since the initial video and blog post, I’m starting to get the hint: the Palo Verde beetle wants his due royalties.
Here are a couple of the prior videos of local animals at my house that I referred to in the beginning of the Palo Verde beetle video: