We moved into a brand new "eco" house in the South East a year ago and in the last couple of weeks have started to see several of these little chaps. The house is in a country setting so we're used to seeing all sorts of weird and wonderful bugs of one kind or another but these look a little menacing and our big concern is that they are wood-boring beetles of some sort. Can anyone suggest what they might be?
No need to be alarmed this is Harpalus rufipes, a species of Ground beetle. This group of beetles are generally predators feeding on smaller invertebrates; however, this species does a side line in eating seeds and is otherwise known as the Strawberry Seed beetle. These are attracted to lights after dark and will enter homes through open doors, gaps beneath doors etc. They are often numerous where there are good stands of Fat Hen, Chenopodium album, in seed.