Introduction of Tu Bie Chong:Ground Beetle or Eupolyphaga seu Steleophaga.

TCM Herbalism:Medicinals and Classifications. ✵The article gives records of the herb Ground Beetle, its English name, Latin name, property and flavor, its botanical source two insect species, ①.Eupolyphaga sinensis Walker., ②.Steleophaga plancyi (Bol.)., with a detailed introduction to the botanical features of these two insect species, the growth characteristics, and ecological environment of these two insect species, the features of the herb Ground Beetle, its pharmacological actions, medicinal efficacy, and administration guide.

Eupolyphaga seu Steleophaga (Ground Beetle).

dried herb insects of Eupolyphaga seu Steleophaga Pin Yin Name: Tǔ Biē Chónɡ, Tǔ Yuán, Zhè Chónɡ, Dì Biē or Dì Wū Guī.
 English Name: Ground Beetle.
 Latin Name: Eupolyphaga seu Steleophaga.
 Property and flavor: cold, salty, mild toxic.

 Brief introduction: The herb Eupolyphaga seu Steleophaga is the dried female insect of Eupolyphaga sinensis Walker., or Steleophaga plancyi(Bol.), used (1).to break stasis for the treatment of amenorrhea and gynecological mass, and (2).to promote the healing of bone fracture. The herb is commonly known as Eupolyphaga seu Steleophaga, Ground Beetle, Zhè Chónɡ or Tǔ Biē Chónɡ.

 Source: Herbal classic book defined the herb Eupolyphaga seu Steleophaga (Ground Beetle) as the dried female insect of the species (1).Eupolyphaga sinensis Walker., (2).Steleophaga plancyi(Bol.). They are small animals of the Corydidae family (Corydiidae, Eupolyphaga family) of the Blattaria order. These 2 commonly used species are introduced:

(1).Eupolyphaga sinensis Walker.

 an insect of Eupolyphaga sinensis Walker. Description: Eupolyphaga sinensis Walker is commonly known as Dì Biē (means a soft-shelled turtle living in soil) or Dì Wū Guī (means a turtle living in soil), or Tǔ Yuán, or Ground Turtle. Eupolyphaga sinensis Walker., is sexual dimorphism, incomplete metamorphosis, the male insect has wings, and the female insect has no wings. The ground turtle is oval, 1.3–3 cm long, and 1.2–2.4 cm wide. The female insect is about 3 cm long, the upper and lower parts are flat, black, and glossy. The front end is narrower, the back end is wider, and the back is purplish-brown, glossy, and apterous (wingless). The chest and backplate are well-developed, covering the head; The abdominal dorsal plates are 9 segments, arranged in an imbricated pattern. The ventral surface is reddish-brown, the head is small, bent toward the abdomen, 1 pair of filiform antennae, often decapitated; and there are 3 pairs of feet on the chest, with fine hairs and spines. The belly has transverse links. Crisp and fragile. It smells fishy and slightly salty.

 an insect of Eupolyphaga sinensis Walker crawls on ground. Life habits: The ground turtle is an important medicinal insect. It lives in dark, moist, and humus-rich sandy soil, it is often seen in grain stores or shady and damp oil mills. It is afraid of the sun, hides during the day, and is active at night.

 an insect of Eupolyphaga sinensis Walker crawls on field. To complete a generation, Eupolyphaga sinensis Walker. needs to go through three stages: egg, nymph, and adult. It takes about 8 months for male insects to grow wings from nymphs, and 9 to 11 months for female insects to mature apterous (wingless). Male insects die 5–7 days after mating. The female insect can lay eggs within one week after mating and lay eggs once for life.

 many insects of Eupolyphaga sinensis Walker crawls in soil. Eupolyphaga sinensis Walker. is an omnivorous insect, that likes to eat fresh food, it likes bran, rice bran, followed by corn flour, crushed grain, peanut cake, soybean meal, miscellaneous fish, meat, and a variety of grass leaves, melon peel, chicken, cow dung and other coarse materials. It grows slowly if fed only on grass feed, full-price feed material is composed of 72% wheat bran, corn flour 20%, soybean cake 5%, and animal feed 3% (cooked feed). The feed can be prepared with boiled water, add another 30%–40% green vegetables or melon fruit. Individual insects can grow into adults after 5–6 months of full feeding.

 Distribution: The insect grows near rivers and lakes; it is distributed in southern areas and other areas of China. Medicinal insects are produced mainly in the Zhujiang River area, Bozhou of Anhui, and other areas of China.

 many dried herb insects of Ground Beetle Di Bie Herb Characteristics: Ground Beetle: The insect is in a flat oval shape, 1.3~3 cm long, and 1.2~2.4 cm wide. The front end is narrow, the back end is wide, and the back-surface is puce (purple-brown), glossy, and apterous (wingless). The protergum is developed, covering the head; The dorsal plate has 9 segments, which are imbricate. The abdomen is reddish-brown, the head is small, has 1 pair of filiform antennae, which often fall off, and the chest has 3 pairs of feet, covered with fine hairs and thorns. There are transverse annuli in the abdomen. The texture of the herb is loose and crisp, and it is easily broken. The herb has a fishy odor and tastes slightly salty.

 Pharmacological actions: ①.improve the tolerance of myocardium and brain to ischemia, and reduce the oxygen consumption of the heart and brain tissue; ②.reduce total cholesterol, delay the formation of atherosclerosis; ③.inhibit platelet aggregation; ④.anti-thrombotic effect.

 Medicinal efficacy: Break blood stagnation and remove blood stasis, the reunion of fractured tendons and bones. It is indicated for fall injury and swelling of blood stagnation or stasis, traumatic injury, injury of tendon and muscle, bone fracture, amenorrhea due to blood stasis, postpartum abdominal pain due to blood stasis, abdominal mass and a lump in the abdomen, rigid swollen tongue, sublingual swollen tongue (double tongue, inflammation of the sublingual soft tissue), etc.

 Administration of Eupolyphaga seu Steleophaga (Tǔ Biē Chónɡ): 
Reference: Administration Guide of Eupolyphaga seu Steleophaga (Tǔ Biē Chónɡ)
TCM Books: ①.Internally: 3~10 grams; ②.water decoction, 0.5~2 qian (about 1.5~6 grams), or prepare to pill, powder; ③.Internally:water decoction, 3~10 grams; infusing in wine and drink;prepare to ground herb powder, 1~1.5 grams. Externally:proper amount, mouthwash with water decoction, prepare to finely ground herb powder and sprinkle apply, or mash fresh herb and apply stick.
 Contraindications,Precautions and Adverse Reactions:should forbidden using the herb Eupolyphaga seu Steleophaga during pregnancy.

(2).Steleophaga plancyi (Boleny).

 a colorful drawing of Steleophaga plancyi. Description: Steleophaga plancyi (Boleny) is also known as Polyphaga plancyi Bolivar., is commonly known as Jì Dì Biē. Only male insects have wings, female insects have no wings. The male insect is 2.2 cm long. The female insect is 3.0~3.6 cm long, broadly ovate, and wider than Eupolyphaga sinensis Walker. The upper and lower parts of the body are flat, the head is small, curved toward the ventral surface, the mouthparts are masticatory, the large jaw is hard, the antennae are filamentous, long, and knobby, the compound eyes are developed, the antennae are rounded reniform, 2 single eyes, the front chest is expanded like a shield, the front is narrow and the back is broad on the head. The anterior chest of the male insect is undulated, with lacunae, 2 pairs of wings, leathery anterior wings, membranous posterior wings, folded into a fan when not in use, good at walking and flying, but not commonly used wings. The first abdominal section is very short, its retiform veins are not developed, eight, nine two abdominal sections of the backplate are shortened, caudate, and tails are in 1 pair. The ninth retiform vein of the male insect has a pair of ventral spines, and the eighth and ninth retiform veins of the female insect are concealed inside the seventh retiform vein. Genitalia is not protruding. Feet are in 3 pairs, equally developed, with fine hairs, prickly, the base is enlarged, covering the thoracoventral and abdominal parts. 5 tarsi, 2-clawed.

 The surface is dark brown. The anterior margin of the male adult insect is arched, the submarginal veins of the anterior wing are obviously branched, the radial veins, the middle veins, and the elbow veins are longitudinal, and there are significant transverse veins between the veins. The buttocks are quite short.

 many dried insects of Ground Beetle Ji Di Bie Life habits:  It is omnivorous and likes to eat hummus and starch, and other substances. In the daytime, it hides and is motionless, foraging lately. It lives in the wild tree roots and fallen leaves under the rock, rice stores have chaff, and the bottom of the warehouse or the oil press square damp place. The insect perches in the kitchen, kitchen stove foot, dank place, etc.

 Herb Characteristics: The insect is elliptic, 2.2~3.7 cm long, and 1.4~2.5 cm wide. The back is brownish-black (dark brown), and usually has yellowish-brown patches and black spots at the edges.



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  • 1.Introduction of Tu Bie Chong:Ground Beetle or Eupolyphaga seu Steleophaga.

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