For the last few days we’ve had this not-so-little chap keep turning up at different locations around our garden:
At about 3inches (8cm or so) he’s pretty huge, and very impressive. It’s taken a good 6-8 years for him to reach this final stage in his life, and he really needs to find a mate this summer, because he won’t make it through the winter.
Sadly these beetles are becoming more and more rare. I’ve only ever seen one a few times in my life. They’re considered endangered across most of Europe, and are a protected species in the UK. Given that we seem to keep rescuing him from various “scrapes” that he gets himself into, I can see why. Yesterday we found him stuck on his back on the front doorstep, waiting to be eaten by any passing bird. Today I rescued him from some flower pots that he’d apparently fallen into. Although he’s an amazing sight, I hope I don’t see him again, and that he just manages to get on with his life, and continuing his species.