Did You Know? Incredible Blister Beetle Facts

Get to know this little being with blister beetle facts

Do you know what a black blister beetle look like? Blister beetles are a type of beetle in the family Meloidae. They derive their name from the secretion of a blistering substance when facing any dangerous or a predatory instance. They are 7,500 species of the breed that are known worldwide. The blister beetles belong to a group of insects and have a very interesting and sordid past with people. Blister beetle epicauta (common name blister beetle) feeds on a variety of crops that include alfalfa, ornamental plants, garden plants, and soybean. A black blister beetle goes through various larval stages as it is hypermetamorphic. The black blister beetle larvae are insectivores and feed on small bees and grasshopper eggs.

Adult blister beetles have long and soft bodies. The head of a blister beetle is broad and vertical. The section of the blister beetle’s between the head, and the wings is narrower than the wings and narrower in the head. What many people mistake for a black blister beetle bite is actually contact dermatitis from touching the body of the beetle. Blister beetles do not have teeth or stingers and hence can not bite. After knowing all about what is a blister beetle through this interesting article, you should also check out our other articles on bichir and water beetle.

Blister beetle

Fact File

What do they prey on?

Grasshopper eggs and immature bees

What do they eat?

Herbivore, Omnivore

Average litter size?

Up to 200 eggs

How much do they weigh?

2.2-2.4 lb

How long are they?


How tall are they?

0.75-1.25 in

What do they look like?

Long, soft bodies and wide heads with antennae

Skin Type

Red patch skin without any fur

What are their main threats?

Human activities

What is their conservation status?

Least Concern

Where you'll find them

Arid regions


United States, West Indies, South and Central America





Scientific Name






Blister Beetle Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a blister beetle?

Blister beetle epicauta is a type of insect. There are approximately 7,500 species of beetles that are known worldwide including the striped blister beetle and black blister beetle.

What class of animal does a blister beetle belong to?

Blister beetles belong to the class of insects. They belong to the plant-eating family of Meloidae.

How many blister beetles are there in the world?

There is no accurate number as to how many adult blister beetles there are in the world because there are a large number of species that belong to the class of insects.

Where does a blister beetle live?

The blister beetles usually prefer to live in most of the abundant in arid regions. They feed on leaves in the tops of a plant and are attracted to flowers. They can be found in various regions of the United States.

What is a blister beetle's habitat?

The blister beetles’ habitat is most abundant in arid regions and they feed on leaves in the tops of a plant and are attached to flowers. They prefer living in areas where there are adequate plants and other food sources for them to feed on. The larvae of blister beetles feed on grasshopper eggs and small bees.

Who do blister beetles live with?

The blister beetles move around in loose groups. They’re often found feeding on flowers around the gardens, especially in the Lantana.

How long does a blister beetle live?

The blister beetle life cycle is very short and lives up to three months only depending on different factors which include environmental factors and its surroundings.

How do they reproduce?

The males and females of Lytta magister can usually smell others from a long way off because they fly in large groups of their species. The males and females court the females by climbing on top of potential mates and stroke their antennae. An active and tiny larva comes out when an egg when it hatches.

What is their conservation status?

The conservation status of blister beetles is not extinct as the population of the blister beetles keep increasing after they lay their eggs in multiple numbers. Also, as the number of species is high in number, there are no chances of the blister beetles going extinct.

Blister Beetle Fun Facts

What do blister beetles look like?

What does a blister beetle look like? Well, the answer is that the blister beetles are soft-bodied beetles that range in size from 0.75-1.25 in of length. The color of the blister beetles is different and ranges in color from an ash gray to bright yellow with black stripes. They are long, plant-feeding insects that come in a variety of colors. They live in flower beds and grassy fields. They have a wide head with antennae.

A blister beetle looks like a grasshopper

How cute are they?

They look cute only because of their appearance but they are harmful to human beings. They also do damage to grasshoppers.

How do they communicate?

The blister beetles communicate with the use of chemicals. Some of the blister beetles locate the female blister beetles by their scent. Some of the beetles make sound, with the use of scraping their mouthparts together or by rubbing their legs on their bodies.

How big is a blister beetle?

The blister beetles are usually small in size as compared to the other species of insects. They are 3/4 to 1-1/4 in long and are narrow-bodied.

How fast can a blister beetle move?

The blister beetles are said to have covered 1.5 meters in one second by achieving a speed of 3.4 mph. They move faster when they see a predator behind them or they see the insects that they prey on. They move swiftly in order to catch and hold the insect that they eat.

How much does a blister beetle weigh?

The blister beetles weigh around 2.2 lbs. They are very short and weigh very little as compared to the other species.

What are their male and female names of the species?

The male name of the species is helenium, and another is asteraceae, and the female name of the species is Epicauta heterodera horn.

What would you call a baby blister beetle?

A baby blister beetle is called a larva or blister beetle. These are active insectivores that feed on grasshopper eggs and bees.

What do they eat?

Blister beetle larvae eat grasshopper eggs, and some of the adult blister beetles like feeding on flowers like alfalfa, acacia, dandelions, amaranth, dandelions and others.

Are they poisonous?

Yes, blister beetles are poisonous as it is advisable to admire them from far off. They secrete some toxic chemicals that will have an adverse effect on the human’s skin. Blister beetle treatment is simply washing the affected area with soap and water. So, it is advisable to admire a blister beetle from far off so that they won’t harm you as side effects of the toxic chemicals are quite painful to endure. Blister beetle poisoning is a common occurrence amongst horses, so refrain from rearing blister beetles as pets if you also have horses as pets as it the toxic poisoning may be lethal for horses.

Would they make a good pet?

No, blister beetles do not make good pets as they are toxic to human beings as well as to other animals such as dogs, and rabbits. You cannot pet a blister beetle because they are very dangerous for human beings and if you have pets at your home, then you should not pet blister beetles. Blister beetle side-effects are too serious to be avoided.

Did you know...

Blister beetles get attracted to the lights in the night. They produce a chemical known as cantharidin, which causes blistering of the skin and is used for certain medical reasons as well. Blister beetles get attracted to weeds during the bloom period. The toxin known as cantharidin that is produced by the blister beetle is known to kill animals such as horses.

If blister beetles get disturbed due to some of the other reasons, then they may secrete a bodily fluid that might cause irritation and swelling when it comes in contact with the human skin. The population of blister beetles increases rapidly during the warm season. It is important to ensure that you do not come in contact with blister beetles as they can have an adverse effect on you.

Where can you find blister beetles?

You can find blister beetles in most of the abundance in arid regions. They feed on leaves in the tops of a plant and are attracted to flowers. They are found in flower beds as well.

What do blister beetle bites look like?

The bite of a blister beetle causes blisters or welt. Once the blister beetle bites you, it turns into a raised, red patch of skin and affects you terribly. You can feel pain and a burning sensation and also it gets red when you are bitten by a blister beetle. Therefore, it is advisable to never go and touch a blister beetle as they may harm you very badly.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other arthropods including atlas beetle, or Caiman lizard.

You can even occupy yourself at home by drawing one on our beetle coloring pages.



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