All beetles are characterised by a tough, inflexible pair of modified forewings called elytra, which meet along the centre of the body and cover the membranous hind wings. The domino beetle is a ground beetle and although the elytra are still present, they are no longer adapted for flight. Instead, the domino beetle has developed long, slender legs for speed, and excellent vision for hunting its prey on the ground. All beetles also have sense organs which are concentrated in the head region, while tiny, vibration-sensitive hairs cover the entire body (5).
The flightless ground beetles of the genus Anthia have an unusual defence mechanism. These beetles are able to squirt out jets of formic acid when they feel threatened, causing burns to the skin (5) and producing an extremely unpleasant smell to deter potential predators (6).
The domino beetle generally remains hidden in the day and becomes active at night (3) (6). It preys on many different invertebrates including beetles, woodlice, worms, caterpillars and other small arthropods (6). Mating takes place after the rainy season (3).