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Coleoptera of Great Smoky Mountains National Park Species Pages

Family Carabidae

            Tribe Nebriini

 Nebria  (Reductonebria) appalachia  Darlington

Description and Taxonomy

Length 7.5-9.5mm. This species was described from the Smoky Mountains (Darlington 1931) and is one of the smallest North American species of Nebria . Besides size, the presence of large red spots between the eyes, strongly sinuated pronotum anterior to the acute hind angles, and absence of lateral pronotal setae allow the species to be distinguished from the other eastern Nebria (Lindroth 1963).  In the Nearctic Region, the genus is represented by 53 species. Only 3 of them inhabit GSMNP (Ball and Bousquet 2001).

Life History

The species is strongly hygrophilous and confined to the barren banks of gravel and stones in the upper reaches of streams. In GSMNP adults can be found under stones on gravel bars of creeks at middle altitudes (1000m) and upwards.  Specimens from GSMNP were collected during June and the type series of the species was taken during August (Darlington 1931). At  Porters Creek the species was taken in company with other ground-beetles, including Bembidion simplex and Platynus tenuicollis.


The species is a southern Appalachian endemic that occurs from Tennessee and North Carolina (Bousquet and Larochelle 1993), at least from Mt.Michell in the north to GSMNP in the south. The species is known from only a few localities in GSMNP, but probably occurs along most streams at their upper reaches in higher elevations. 

Conservation Concerns

Not under threat. But it is not an abundant species in comparison with other Nebria species and could potentially be at risk from climatic changes that affect the limited high elevation areas where the species occurs.

Habitat of  Nebria appalachia.



Locality records in GSMNP.


Development of these pages was supported by grants from Discover Life in America and the National Science Foundation (DEB-0516311). Photograph of habitat courtesy Olexandre Rusin, Louisiana State University.


Ball, G. E., and Y. Bousquet. 2001.  6. Carabidae  Latreille, 1810. In: American Beetles. Vol.1. CRC Press. 32-132 pp.

Bousquet, Y., and  A. Larochelle. 1993. Catalogue of the Geadephaga  (Col. Trachypachidae, Rhysodidae, Carabidae, incl. Cicindelini) of America north of Mexico. Entomological Society of Canada, Memoir No.167. 395 pp.

Darlington, P. J. Jr. 1931. On some Carabidae, including new species, from the mountains of North Carolina and Tennessee. Psyche. Vol.38: 145-164 pp.

Lindroth, C. H. 1961. The ground-beetles (Carabidae, excl.Cicindelinae) of  Canada and Alaska. Part 2. Opuscula Entomologica. Supplementum No.20. 1-200pp.

Posted 14 Aug. 2006, I. M. Sokolov, Louisiana State Arthropod Museum.

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