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 Cassidinae - the tortoise beetles

Cassidinae is a subfamily of leaf beetles with stunning colors and horny projections to assist them in survival in one of the toughest of all habits - out in the open, on foliage. Top of the list of annoying neighbors is ants who share this habitat in search of aphids and other hemipterans. Leaf beetles have massively extended edges on their elytra and pronotum so they can tuck away their toes and antennae and wait in safety when ants, wasps or predatory bugs come prowling. Other tortoise beetles are convex but this group is often very flat, translucent, horned, metallic, strongly pitted, tiny and totally fascinating.

Martin Lagerwey created this list 4 years ago