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When to find Dynastes tityus? And some other questions.


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I know we have these in the area because I've found a couple of dead ones, and now I'd like to find some live ones. I'm in Central Texas, and there's a vacant lot with some old trees next door to my house, plus a gas station about a mile away that's surrounded by forest. I assume these would be decent spots to look, but I'm not sure if it's the right time of year to find these. I've read that the larvae morph into adults in "late Summer", but I'm not sure when that is. Now? September? 

Does anyone know if the banana+beer bait is effective for these? 

How territorial are they? I have an 18" square enclosure I'm thinking of converting, and I'm not sure if I could keep a few beetles in there without a divider, should I be lucky enough to get more than one.


Also, do they need any substrate in particular? I don't plan to breed them, but I know they need places to burrow. Is an organic potting soil (containing perlite) acceptable, or should I go for coconut coir? 

If I do end up with eggs, would it be OK to just take the eggs outside and put them in a suitable spot, assuming the adults were caught a mile or two from my house? I don't want to try to raise the larvae, but it'd be a shame to just let the eggs die. 

And will I see these guys out-and-about at all, or do they just hide all day? I won't have the room or the enclosure brightly lit, but I know they're nocturnal. 

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Guest AlexW

Orin's Ultimate Guide to Breeding Beetles can help you immensely, because tityus is one of his favorite (and thus longest) topics. Unfortunately I'm afraid to paraphrase the book, because your questions span the entire section and I don't think Orin would like it (legal issues?).

So I'm going to call him over.

@Allpet Roaches

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Took a look around a few hopeful spots this evening. Lots of grasshoppers and cicadas attracted to the lights, plus geckos and toads come to eat the bugs. Coolest find was a female dobsonfly. No beetles aside from a few tiny ones, unfortunately. 

Dobsonfly, for those interested. About 3" long, caught in a soft net and released unharmed (but annoyed) after the photo.


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Are you sure that the dead beetles you found are D. Tityus, I'm not sure if there range goes in to central Texas, I have a feeling they could be D. granti, and now is the time to go out looking for them, I haven't tried the beer banana bait yet, but I bet it would work well combined with gas station lights, and possibly large stores like Walmart and Home Depot. Adults will live about 2 to 4  months on  average, you can use moist coco coir to house the adults, give a few inches of soil for the adults to burrow down in to so they don't dry out, you want get any eggs from this setup, and I would only keep one male in the cage with a few females, the males could fight and injure themselves, you may have better luck going to Arizona to collect these beetles,  pacifically payson AZ. That is where I'm headed twords the end of the month to primarily collect these guys and other arthropods. I hope this helps :)

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Here they are: 


I'm pretty sure I read that any Dynastes like these found in Texas are tityus, but I could be wrong. I can get them out of the case for better photos if needed. The female had that dark color when found, and it's stuck around. It seems to be pigment, not some kind of stain. 


I definitely want these, but I don't want them enough to go to Arizona. I'll keep trying around here. How long does it take for a bait to work? I'm not sure I want to sit out all night in somebody's parking lot with a smelly bait. 

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You can put the bait in a ziplock bag with some slits in the side of the bag in a parking lot next to a light, you could then check on the bait a couple times a night, I doubt they would even notice, I'm planning on sleeping in my car in the Home Depot parking lot for 2 nights when I go down to Arizona for collecting reasons, also the bait works better when it has a chance to ferment a day or 2, by the way they do apear to be        D. Tityus 

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