Bug Brooches Bring the Bling


One of the strangest sightings at the Biscayne BioBlitz so far must be the collection of bejeweled “ironclad beetles” in the Elliott Key science tent. Poor Zopherus chiliensis, a flightless wood-boring beetle, is frequently transformed into tourist kitsch in Mexico.

The harmless (and hapless) bugs suffer the application of rhinestones to their thick exoskeletons and are then chained alive—yes, you read that right, alive—to women’s blouses.

If that bugs you, don’t worry: We’re just counting beetles here at the ‘Blitz.