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deathwatch beetle Line breaks: death¦watch bee¦tle
Pronunciation: /ˌdɛθwɒtʃ ˈbiːt(ə)l/

Definition of deathwatch beetle in English:


A small beetle whose larvae bore into dead wood and structural timbers, causing considerable damage. The adult makes a tapping sound like a watch ticking, formerly believed to portend death.
  • Xestobium rufovillosum, family Anobiidae
Example sentences
  • Male death-watch beetles bang their heads against the sides of their wooden tunnels to attract females.
  • Indeed, the behaviour of death-watch beetle actually makes it more susceptible to surface treatments than common furniture beetle.
  • Anobiids are similar to lyctids in color and size, but are cylindrical; the common furniture and death-watch beetles belong in this group.
Definition of deathwatch beetle in:
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