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Coleoptera of Great Smoky Mountains National Park Species Pages

Family Carabidae

            Tribe Pterostichini

 Pterostichus (Euferonia) lachrymosus (Newman)

The Weeping Ground Beetle

Description and Taxonomy

Length 14.5-17 mm. This medium-sized black Pterostichus species is easily distinguished from similar species by the dull elytra and distinctive pronotum. The pronotum is noticeably constricted behind, with an obvious long sinuation before each hind angle. The latero-basal impression of the pronotum is long and linear, and is separated from the lateral margin by a broad convexity.  This species is also characterized by the setose 5th article of the tarsi and, normally, the presence of only two dorsal setae on each elytron (Lindroth 1966). The subgenus is precinctive to the Nearctic Region and contains six species. At least four of them inhabit the Smokies. The genus itself comprises about 180 species in the Nearctic Region, about twenty of them inhabiting GSMNP (Ball and Bousquet 2001).

Life History

The species is brachypterous and moderately hygrophilous, living in a wide range of wet habitats in mixed hardwood and coniferous forests. In GSMNP adults can be found beneath rocks or logs predominantly in northern hardwoods and spruce-fir forests from 1500m and up.  Specimens from GSMNP were collected during March-September.  At Clingmans Dome (elv., 2020m) the species was taken in a company with the ground beetle Platynus angustatus.


The species is widely distributed through eastern North America as far south as Georgia and South Carolina and north to Quebec and New Brunswick (Bousquet and Larochelle 1993). The species is known from many localities in GSMNP. 

Conservation Concerns

Not under threat.

Habitat of  Pterostichus  lachrymosus.


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 Yuliya Sokolova, 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.

Lindroth, C.H. 1966. The ground-beetles (Carabidae, excl.Cicindelinae) of  Canada and Alaska. Part 4. Opuscula Entomologica. Supplementum No.29. 409-648pp.

Posted 26 Oct. 2006, I. M. Sokolov, Louisiana State Arthropod Museum.

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