oil beetle

  1. any of several blister beetles of the genus Meloe that exude an oily fluid from the joints of their legs when disturbed.

Origin of oil beetle

First recorded in 1650–60

Words Nearby oil beetle

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use oil beetle in a sentence

  • Part of his motivation had been provided by the oil-beetle larvae.

    The Forgotten Planet | Murray Leinster
  • Some of them provide me with the oil beetle and the Sitaris, rare finds at one time, today of no use to me.

    The Life of the Fly | J. Henri Fabre
  • It happily consumes those provisions and, in time, an oil-beetle crawls out of the tunnel a mining-bee so laboriously prepared.

    The Forgotten Planet | Murray Leinster
  • It is a protection, for it both smells and tastes so nasty that no bird will ever attempt to eat an oil-beetle.

  • The English, because of its trick of discharging oily blood when on the defensive, call this insect the Oil-beetle.

British Dictionary definitions for oil beetle

oil beetle

  1. any of various beetles of the family Meloidae that exude an oily evil-smelling blood from their joints, which deters enemies

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012