Members of this family are commonly called checkered beetles. There are roughly 3,500 species known in this family of beetles; about 500 are known from North America. Some species are known to live up to three years.

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Enoclerus nigripes (Say, 1823). This is the most commonly encountered species of checkered beetles in central Illinois. Adults usually prey on other insects; some feed on pollen. Larvae are predators as well and often feed under the bark of trees (and are known from a number of tree species, such as spruce, white pine, elm, mulberry, and wild cherry). This specimen was collected by Mark DuBois in Marshall Co., Illinois.

This specimen (of Enoclerus nigripes) was pinned using a minuten insect pin (a very small pin inserted into a small block [in this case, a bit of synthetic cork]; that block is then pinned using a larger insect pin). This approach is often used with smaller insects which would be significantly damaged if a larger insect pin was directly inserted. For size purposes, the insect pin on the left of the image is a #3 insect pin.