Metal sculpture by Gar Waterman of a stag beetle. The ridged top of the stag beetle is called the elytra, which are hardened forewings that protect the hindwings underneath used for flying.
Close-up photo by Eric Lazo-Wasem of a longhorn beetle’s mandibles. They are not used for feeding, but for jousting with other males to defend potential egg-laying sites for their mates.
Metal sculpture of a weevil by Gar Waterman. The elongated snout of weevils gives them their common name: snout beetle. Mandibles at the end of the snout allow a weevil to feed deeply inside plants.
Close-up photo by Eric Lazo-Wasem of a weevil’s footpads, which act like suction cups, providing traction for walking on smooth surfaces such as leaves and smooth bark.
Metal sculpture by Gar Waterman of a scissor-jawed longhorn beetle. Longhorn beetles are named for their elongate, thin antennae.
Close-up photo by Eric Lazo-Wasem of a longhorn beetle’s antennae, each segment of which has sensory receptors that give a beetle its sense of smell.
Close-up photo by Eric Lazo-Wasem of a longhorn beetle’s leg. Each leg ends in a claw.
Metal sculpture by Gar Waterman, detail showing the lyre-shaped horns of a scarab beetle. The immovable horns on the flower-feeding male scarab could be an adaptation for defense, or are possibly ornamental and used to attract females.
Detail by Eric Lazo-Wasem of a scarab beetle’s horns
“Beauty and the Beetle: Coleoptera in Art and Science,” an exhibit that aims to inspire an appreciation of the “marvels” of the Earth’s most diverse denizens, is on view May 27-Aug. 6 at the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History.