I saw this cool species for the first time years and years ago when I lived in the state park here (during my former life). I thought it was beautiful then, and I still think the same thing. So when I spotted an ironclad beetle (Zopherus nodulosus haldemani) ambling across our patio yesterday, I ran for my camera. I took a few close-ups, then I....
...picked it up. As you can see, this species likes to play dead. I took some more shots, then I set it down on the patio.
Afraid we might accidentally step on it, I decided I'd better move it somewhere safe. No way, the beetle decided, and latched itself onto the patio's surface with its claws. I couldn't budge it!
Okay, I agreed. But not for long. When the beetle finally let go, I slid a sheet of newspaper under it and scooted it over to a nearby flower bed. End of ironclad beetle encounter.