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I was camping in Big Cottonwood Canyon this weekend. Sunday Morning a large beetle landed on my leg. I flicked it off. As we were taking down camp more of this same beetle kept landing on me. It had about and inch long body and almost double that with the antenna. I was hoping you could help me identify it and tips that may be useful for preventing them from pursuing me in the future.

Answer(s)

A

Was your critter one of these (or similar):

http://bugguide.net/node/view/277/bgimage
or
http://bugguide.net/node/view/3142/bgimage?from=120

Neither of these beetles will harm you.  Your body must
have been emitting some type of pheromone that resembled
a stressed tree.  I have had a lot of beetles land on
me while out in the field, and I am not sure why this.
I doubt you will have any more encounters with this beetle
again.  Actually, I was camping in Little Cottonwood last weekend; I
wish I had been attacked by a longhorned beetle, they're
really spectacular beetles!

Posted on 25 Jul 2008

Ryan Davis
Arthropod Diagnostician, Utah Plant Pest Diagnostic Laboratory

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