Gia Caruso, Land O' Pines School
American Burying Beetle
Gone. That’s the only word that came to my mind when I couldn’t find anything I needed. This includes my parents, my sister, and most of my food sources. This is ridiculous. As I walk past several animals surrounded by their families, I start to wonder where mine was. Now, I’m hungry. I come across squirrel carrion with a couple ants running across it. Yup, that’s what we eat; and it’s delicious. Any animal would have been fine for me to eat. We also eat a large range of insects. Since I’m stuck here with nothing to do for a while, we might as well get to know each other. My name is Burt and I’m an American burying beetle. Life isn’t as simple as it seems!
My species originally lived in a large part of southern Canada, and 35 eastern U.S. states. You’ll never guess how many states we live in now. Seven. That’s it. Just plain old seven. Since I’m an adult now, I can find a mate of my own. Most of our breeding takes place in the warm months of June and July. We usually do this at night, when we fly around seeking dead animal carcasses. If the carcass is about the right size, about the size of a dove or a bunny rabbit, we will pair up. Afterward, we will clean the carcass of feathers and all fur. Next, The female mate will lay 10 to 30 eggs in a large chamber next to the carcass. The point of this carcass is to provide food for the precious larva.
I truly hope I taught you a lot about my fascinating species. Hopefully, my life and the life of the American burying beetle will live on for as long as possible. With the help of humans, I believe that my species will make it off the endangered list.
Written by: Gia Caruso
Land O’ Pines School, Howell
Teacher: Mrs. Madison