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Leptinotarsa decemlineata (Say)
Chrysomela decemlineata

Insecta, Coleoptera, Chrysomelidae .

Colorado beetle

Description, Biology, Life Cycle, Damage, Common Names, Images


[R]Description
- Adult: Oval body, very convex, 10 to 11 mm long. The prothorax of a brown red coloration, as is the head, bears several black spots. The yellow elytra are decorated with 10 characteristic black longitudinal bands (*) .
- Eggs: orangy yellow, ovoid, 1.5 mm in length, they are fixed in clusters of 10 to 30 on the underside of the leaves (*) .
- Larva: after hatching, it is orangy red and measures 1.5 to 2.0 mm in length. Once development is complete it measures 11 to 12 mm in length, it is soft and plump, of a more or less dark red colour. The head and legs are black as well as 2 rows of obvious plates on the side of the body.
- Pupa: in the ground, pinkish, 1 cm long (*) .

[R]Biology
- Host plants: exclusively Solanaceae, especially potato; otherwise, egg-plant, tomato and wild Solanaceae: black nightshade (Solanum nigrum), woody nightshade (Solanum dulcamara).
- Adult: hibernates in the ground at a depth of between 25 and 40 cm. It emerges out in spring after rain and once the ground temperature reaches 14 °C at its hibernation depth. It then feeds on the young potato leaves. After mating, the female immediately starts to lay eggs.
Fecundity: 700 to 800 eggs.
Lifespan: 1 to 2 years.
- Egg: embryonic development lasts 4 to 10 days.
- Larva: feeds on foliage, moults 3 times and completes its development in 15 days. It then buries itself in the ground at a depth of between 2 and 20 cm to pupate.
- Pupa: development lasts 8 to 15 days.

[R]Life Cycle
- 1 generation, a second generation sometimes incomplete in temperate and meridional zones. The total length of the cycle is about 5 to 6 weeks.
- The adults appear at regular intervals from April onwards; the first generation adults appear in July and feed abundantly. Some of them reproduce, the other bury themselves in the ground and enter diapause.
- As a result of the adult lifespan, the annual generations superimpose themselves and all the instars can be simultaneously observed in the fields.
- End of August beginning of September, the surviving adults bury themselves in the ground to hibernate.

[R]Damage
The adults and the larvae destroy partially or totally the foliage of potato or other host Solanaceae (*) . In the event of a major invasion, the harvest is greatly reduced.

[R]Remark/A>
Originating from America, this pest was introduced to France in 1922 in the Bordeaux region, before it invaded all France and Europe mainland from 1940 onwards.


[R]Common Names
DE: Kartoffelkäfer ES: Dorifora FR: Doryphore IT: Dorifora della patata PT: Escaravelho da batateira GB: Colorado beetle

[R] Images

  1. Leptinotarsa decemlineata (Say) Pupa in its cell, in the ground (Coutin R. / OPIE)
  2. Leptinotarsa decemlineata Say (Coutin R. / OPIE)
    Damage on potato plant The plant is almost totally defoliated.
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  3. Leptinotarsa decemlineata Say (Coutin R. / OPIE)
    Ovipositing on the underside of a potato leaf.
  4. Leptinotarsa decemlineata Say (Coutin R. / OPIE)
    Fully grown larvae on a potato leaf
  5. Leptinotarsa decemlineata Say (Coutin R. / OPIE)
    Adult on a potato leaf

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