; subclass Pterygota, order Coleoptera)
Family of robust beetles, 1–50 mm long, in which the elytra are toughened, and often highly sculptured, with a pattern of coloured or metallic scales. Some are flightless, with fused elytra. The head is produced into a rostrum bearing mandibles at the tip; some are short and stout, others long and narrow, up to three times the length of the body. The antennae are elbowed and clubbed. Larvae are legless, grub-like, and are usually found inside a plant, or underground, at the roots. Many are crop pests (e.g. Anthonomus grandis, the cotton boll weevil, and Sitona lineatus, the bean weevil or pea weevil). There are 60 000 species, making it the largest beetle family.
Subjects: Zoology and Animal Sciences.