Use of Slug Mucus by Fungus-Feeding Beetles (Coleoptera: Erotylidae, Melandryidae, Tenebrionidae)
In the summer in central Japan, the pleasing fungus beetle Episcapha fortunii Crotch 1873 was observed eating the mucus of the slug Meghimatium fruhstorferi (Collinge 1901). In addition, the darkling beetle Platydema subfascia (Walker 1858) and the false darkling beetle Synstrophus macrophthalmus (Reitter 1887) fed on Corticiaceae fungus that was soaked with slug mucus. The beetles might use slug mucus as a source of water or nutrients during dry, hot weather. These fungus-feeding beetles are considered commensals of the slug.
meghimatium fruhstorferi (Collinge 1901) Gastropoda: Philomycidae • Synstrophus macrophthalmus (Reitter 1887) • Platydema subfasci (Walker 1858) • commensalisms • fungivore • gastropod–insect interaction