The nervous system is remarkably concentrated in some beetles, the abdominal ganglia showing a tendency to become shifted forward and crowded together, and in certain chafers all the thoracic and abdominal ganglia are fused into a single nervecentre situated in the thorax, - a degree of specialization only matched in the insectan class among the Hemiptera and some muscid flies.
Most of the dominant families - such as the Carabidae (ground-beetles), Scarabaeidae (chafers), or Curculionidae (weevils) have a distribution as wide as the order.
Sharp (1899), who divides the order into six great series of families: Lamellicornia (including the chafers and stag-beetles and their allies with five-segmented feet and plate-like terminal segments to the feelers); Adephaga (carnivorous, terrestrial and aquatic beetles, all with five foot-segments); Polymorpha (including a heterogeneous assembly of families that cannot be fitted into any of the other groups); Heteromera (beetles with the fore and intermediate feet five-segmented, and the hind-feet four-segmented); Phytophaga (including the leaf-beetles, and longhorns, distinguished by the apparently four-segmented feet), and Rhynchophora (the weevils and their allies, with head prolonged into a snout, and feet with four segments).
The Passalidae are a tropical family of beetles generally considered to be intermediate between stag-beetles and chafers, the enlarged segments of the feeler being capable of close approximation.
The Scarabaeidae or chafers are an enormous famil y of about 15,000 species.
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