The genus Eleodes contains certain species of beetles belonging to the family Tenebrionidae. They are terrestrial and cursorial, rarely being found on plants of any size, though a few are known to ascend the stems of shrubs. All are of large or medium size, and devoid of functional wings, the elytra being connate, forming a perfect shield which clasps the sides of the body. The integument is very thick, and forms, in connection with this elytral structure, an efficient protection from desiccation. Repugnatorial glands are present, secreting a powerful caustic fluid which is discharged through the anus when the insect is irritated. In order to protect themselves more efficiently they elevate the posterior portions of the body when alarmed, and run off in that position. Probably it is this habit which has suggested the name "circus bugs," often applied to them in the west.
Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Sciences
©1899 Iowa Academy of Science, Inc.
Wickham, H. F.
"Eleodes in Iowa,"
Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Science, 7(1), 59-60.
Available at: https://scholarworks.uni.edu/pias/vol7/iss1/8