American Burying Beetle

Rhode Island State Insect


American burying beetle

Endangered American burying beetle; state insect of Rhode Island.  Photo by USFWS Mountain-Prairie/Flickr (Use Permitted with Attribution).

Official State Insect of Rhode Island

Rhode Island designated the endangered American burying beetle as the official state insect on July 14, 2015. All State Insects

Once a resident of at least 35 states, the American burying beetle is now  found in only six: Rhode Island, Nebraska, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Kansas, and Arkansas (with attempts being made to reintroduce it into Ohio and Massachusetts).

The American burying beetle is a member of the carrion beetle family (Silphidae). The burying beetle is a nocturnal scavenger that helps recycle decaying material back into the ecosystem. The largest carrion-frequenting insect in North America; the American burying beetle can reach 1-1/2 inches in length.

Rhode Island


American Burying Beetle - Cincinnati Zoo