Review of the entire set of Exotic Beetles
by Play Visions (1998). Eight different beetle species released as one of the taxon-specific sets by Play Visions in the late 1990s.
The figures are somewhat flat and of one piece; very nicely detailed (at least dorsally) for their size. Common (rarely Latin) names are printed on the bottom. Some of the Latin names below are of my decision (I think only the Jumnos
are labeled with their Latin names on the underside). The first name presented below is what is actually on the bottom of the figure; if it is a common name then the Latin/scientific name that follows is my interpretation.
A recommended set; Play Visions figures are becoming increasingly rare and hard to find.
On to the figures (in no particular order):
1. buprestid beetle, Chrysochroa
This is a perplexing figure. It is labeled 'South African Longhorned Beetle', and the elytra are painted like Tragocephala variegata
, but it is clearly modeled after a buprestid. I considered it T. variegata
for years but in the end I put sculpt over paint, so I am backtracking and calling it a buprestid, with Chrysochroa
being the most-likely option based on general form. This is probably another example of a mislabed figure (such as the 'chigger' and 'deer tick' in the Fleas, Ticks, and Lice' set).[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
2. Carrion Beetle, Nicrophorus
sp. An interesting choice away from the usual scarabs, cerambycids, and buprestids that usually get all the attention. Not sure confidently of any other carrion beetle figures, but there is an unusual beetle in the K&M Wild Republic Polyvinyl bag insect set that when painted right sure looks like a nicrophorine (Andre did it I know)...[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
3. Fungus Beetle, Erotylidae, gen. sp. I still do not even have a genus level on this guy but it is clearly modeled after something in the family Erotylidae (and the only erotylid figure I am familiar with!).
EDIT 1/24/2017, I have tentatively identified this as Micrencaustus lunulata[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
4. Goliath beetle, Goliathus regius
. This is the only figure attributable to this species (based on color). The related G. orientalis
was made by DeAgostini for their massive World Insect Data Book and G. goliatus
was made by Furuta (Choco Egg Funny Animal Series). Notice the elytra are closed when in flight, a characteristic if most (if not all) cetoniines.[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
5. Macrodontia cervicornis
. One of the coolest in the set, this species has been made once before by Kabaya (Insect Directory).[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
6. Wood-boring beetle, Rosenbergia straussi
. Another unique figure. The common name on this one led to confusion that the T. variegata
(above) was maybe a buprestid.[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
7. Jumnos ruckeri
. A rather flashy figure. If you want a figure of this species that may be more realistically colored, I suggest the XX figure.[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
8. Emerald Weevil, Eupholus
sp. Ah nice! Weevils are not common as figures despite being the second largest family of beetles (recently lost first place to Staphylinidae, due to the sinking of several families into the latter). So, getting a weevil, and one of these gems, is a great addition to this set![You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]