WOOD BORING AND PESTIFEROUS BEETLES
There are numerous families of beetles that use the heartwood of woody plants for food. Some beetles eat the wood directly and some even use the wood to cultivate fungi that they then feed on. This feature means that humans from their egocentric standpoint regard many beetles as 'pests'. Wood boring and other pestiferous beetles do cause great damage and have considerable economic importance affecting timber and food crops. However looking beyond this perspective, one is able to see their great adaptations in life cycle and morphology as well as their important roles as nutrient recyclers in forest ecosystems.
In many cases it is the larval stage of the beetle that causes the most damage by feeding on wood and other plant tissues in its development. However there are also many adult beetles that attack trees and other plants causing considerable harm.
Examples of the families of major xylophagous and pestiferous beetles in the collection: