I stumbled across these small pits in a sandy area within Uminonakamichi Seaside Park in Fukuoka. I guessed they were ant lion pits, so I dug one up and there it was, the perfect little hidden hunter. What a ferocious-looking creature!
Ant lions wait in the bottoms of their pits and when insects (such as ants) fall in, they grab these and suck out the blood through hollow points in their mandibles. It’s no wonder they are called “ant hell” (ari-jigoku) in Japanese.
I’m planning to go back there in a couple of weeks to see if they’ve grown. Some species grow up to 2cm.
The adults look like dragonflies (see here).
Ant Lion = usubakagerou
Location: Uminonakamichi Seaside Park (map here)