Introduction to Endemic Insects of Great Sand Dunes

A beetle with green head and cream and brown patterns on its back
The Great Sand Dunes Tiger Beetle, found only in this national park.

NPS Photo

Over 1,000 species of arthropods are known to live in Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve. This may represent ~25% of the total number that may exist here. Endemic species are those that exist in only one location or area on Earth. Great Sand Dunes harbors at least 7 endemic species.

The seven known endemic species include:

Great Sand Dunes Tiger Beetle
Circus Beetle
Werner's Ant-like Flower Beetle

Triplehorn's Ant-like Flower Beetle
Clown Beetle (undescribed species)
Noctuid Moth (undescribed species)
Robber Fly (undescribed species)

Pictured above is the Great Sand Dunes Tiger Beetle. This beetle features a brown, violin-like pattern surrounded by an ivory color on its elytra (outer wings), similar to colors found in the sand. The head and thorax regions of this beetle are metallic blue/green in color.

Learn more on the park's Insects page.

Last updated: April 20, 2021