The oblique-lined tiger beetle has many adaptations, like all organisms, to specifically fit its niche in the ecosystem. However, this tiger beetle has some extraordinary adaptations for terrestrial activity. As an exothermic organism, the beetle's body temperature must be regulated by its behavior to maintain the proper warmth to operate.


To work at their optimum capacity, the oblique-lined tiger beetle must have a body temperature of between 33 and 38 C (Morgan 1984). In Kenneth Morgan's study, he found that body temperature and activity were positively correlated, meaning that in this range, as temperature increased, so did activity. He also found that for flight, the beetle needs a body temperature between 22 and 26 C. When temperatures are above 38 C, the beetle takes short flights to promote convective cooling (Morgan 1984). The wind from being in flight cools the beetle's body temperature, much like how humans use a fan to cool.

Besides flight, the oblique-lined tiger beetle has other ways to keep its body cool during the warm periods of the day. Surface heat can be a big contributor to a beetle's body temperature. When the ground is excessively warm, Cicindela tranquebarica must regulate this heat source. To do this, the beetle moves from shaded area to shaded area to avoid overheating in the sun (Acorn 2001).

In contrast to the warm days, the nights can get cold for the oblique-lined tiger beetle. So, it digs a burrow for itself to spend the night in (Acorn 2001). The soil traps heat, and it's a good way to avoid the wind.

Photo by Denis A. Doucet

In addition to its temperature regulating adaptations, this beetle has evolved to be quite a successful predator. The oblique-lined tiger beetle can run 29 body lengths per second (Acorn 2001). It uses this speed to chase down prey and capture it in the beetle's strong mandibles. The eyes of the Cicindela tranquebarica are optimized for spotting movement (Acorn 2001), which is useful for predation as well as avoiding its own predators. These physical attributes make the oblique-lined tiger beetle a deadly predator and successful organism.