The early generations’ larvae feed on roots and underground stems, and sometimes on growing tubers. Movento uses a different mode of action so it is an excellent late-season choice. They look very much a like and are hard to distinguish; however they are geographically separate. They are about 1/16 inch long. So, besides holes, small raised bumps also may appear on the tuber surface. Treatment for larvae are not available. Potato and tomato are generally the most seriously affected. Injuries are usually minor and easily outgrown on establi… Adult flea beetles overwinter near where they emerged. Potato flea beetle damage on potato foliage appears as scallop-like scoops, rounded pits or shotholes originating from the underside of the potato leaf. The principle damage by the potato flea beetle is foliar while the economic damage by the tuber flea beetle is to the tubers to be harvested. The adult weevil feeds on all parts of the plant but reproduces only in the stems and roots. Flea beetles are minor pests of potatoes in California, except in the Klamath Basin … Flea beetles, or Alticini in scientific terms, are pesky, shiny little beetles that come in a variety of colors. When the rare severe infestation occurs, plants can defoliate, and tubers can become remain small and become deformed. The sweet potato weevil is a serious pest in the field and in storage. The potato and tuber flea beetles usually will burrow into the ground a few inches but may go as deep as a foot and a half. Its capacity to overwinter in soil and plant debris makes it challenging to manage, and very sneaky. Controlling weeds around and in potato fields is a key part of holding down flea beetle populations. They are deposited in soil crack near the surface and are not seen due to their very small size. Both the adult, or beetle, and the black-spotted, red larva feed on potato leaves. Usually only the potato flea beetle, found in the eastern half of North America, will occasionally cause enough foliar injury to be economically important. There are many small leaf feeding beetles called flea beetles because of their well-developed hind legs that allow them to jump like fleas. Flea beetles overwinter as adults in leaf litter, hedgerows, windbreaks, and wooded areas. The potato flea beetle is found from mid-Nebraska east to Maine and along the Atlantic Coast south to the Carolinas. Sweet Potato Flea Beetle. The flea beetles common to potato are small, black beetles. Striped flea beetle: a beetle with striped wings with a shiny black or greenish carapace. Instructions Diatomaceous earth is one of the easiest ways to get rid of flea beetles on your plants. The tuber flea beetle is found from western Nebraska and Colorado west through the inter-mountain States to the Pacific Coast up through the Pacific Northwest. But they’re all potentially disastrous for your crops—if left unchecked, they can destroy the roots and foliage of a variety of plants in no time. You have likely seen their damage in the tiny holes scattered across your prized hosta or ornamental kale. Damage to foliage is from feeding adults of all flea beetles and are small round holes scattered in the leaf blade giving them a “shot hole” or seive-like appearance. The tuber flea beetle adult is also small, only about 0.1 inch long. Normally, there are one to four generations per season depending on locale. 3. The pits appear as black spots on peeled potatoes. Historically the flea beetles were classified as their own subfamily. Pupation is short; newly-formed adults are soft-shelled and crawl to the surface where their shell hardens and darkens. Potato flea beetle: this bug is a mostly black beetle that targets potato plants. Their hind legs are enlarged for jumping. Flea beetle injury is most important when seedlings are becoming established or in the production of leafy vegetables. Eggplant flea beetle: this is a mostly black bug that targets eggplants. The beetle targets tasty plants in the families Solanaceae (potatoes, tomatoes, eggplant, peppers) and Brassicaceae ( including cole crops: broccoli, kale, cabbage, collards ). On close inspection they are slightly hairy and the wing covers are not shiny as occurs on many other common flea beetles (e.g., western black flea beetle on cabbage family plants). Colorado Potato Beetle. In early spring the adults become active and the female flea beetle lays her eggs in small holes in roots or soil. Epitrix potato flea beetles pose a serious threat to potato production in the UK. This injury is not economic to treat for and rarely defoliation occurs. The adult tuber flea beetle is oval and black with reddish antennae and legs. Potato tubers, or soil attached to the tubers, could carry the pest (as pupae, adults or possibly larvae) over long distances. Titan provides extended control of aphids, Colorado potato beetle, potato flea beetle and potato leafhopper while also reducing damage from wireworm. Potato flea beetles are a small black hopping insect. The sweetpotato flea beetle has not been studied in the Pacific islands, so this account is adapted from the life history of other species elsewhere. The host range comprises potato, tomato, eggplant, tobacco as well as weeds of the family Solanaceae. Sweet potato leaves are often damaged by sweet potato flea beetles (Chaetocnema confinis); however, most damage to the plant occurs from larvae feeding on the roots. Potato flea beetle development. Adults are small (1/10 inch long), shiny, dark brown or black beetles with large hind legs that allow them to jump when disturbed. The potato flea beetles are considered by many to be one of the most serious pests threatening the entire EPPO region today. Larvae are elongated soft-bodied grubs about a quarter to a third inch long. In potato, the principle flea beetles are in the genus Epitrix and are considered a minor pests. Adults emerge when the temperature reaches 50oF, between May to early June in the North and earlier in the South, and begin feeding on weeds or Solanaceous bedding plants such as tomato. After about 10 days, larvae hatch. Western black flea beetle: this pest has a shiny dark green appearance. Adults have an oval body, and their color is shiny green to brown to black. They are all characterized by enlarged hind legs for jumping. This type of damage can predispose the plant to early blight because of the amount of damaged tissue. Signs/Symptoms. Dusting your plants with plain talcum powder repels flea beetles on tomatoes, potatoes, peppers, and other plants. Adults have an oval body, and their color is shiny green to brown to black. Sweet potato weevils are most numerous close to the soil surface. Their body is whitish with a yellowish or light brown head. All flea beetles have large back legs which they use for jumping, especially when disturbed. Adult feeding riddles leaves with small feeding holes that create a shot-hole effect. The common black and yellow-striped "potato bug", a very familiar insect, is the most serious pest of potatoes. Foliar products used for other pests such as Colorado potato beetle and green peach aphid work well against flea beetle adults. Flea beetles can be black, bronze, bluish or brown to metallic gray. Their feeding results in characteristic circular holes less than 3 mm in diameter. They also have a distinctly different diet, as crucifer flea beetle … The import of potatoes from infested areas in Portugal and They vary in color from black to metallic gray. Most adult flea beetles are very small (1/16 –1/8th inch long). The flea beetle is a small, jumping beetle of the leaf beetle family, that makes up the tribe Alticini which is part of the subfamily Galerucinae. Feeding damage does not usually extend more than 3/8 inch into the tuber. Simply sprinkle a light dusting... Spraying plant leaves with neem oil can get rid of flea beetles and discourage them from feeding on the leaves. The eggs hatch in 7-14 days, and the larvae, small, white worm-like bodies, feed on the roots. Larvae are elongated soft-bodied grubs about a quarter to a third inch long. Average of 15 shot holes per terminal leaflet. Flea beetle infestation are sporadic and unpredictable; economic thresholds are not known. Its antennae are 2 ⁄ 3 the length of its body. They are about 1/16 inch long. Flea beetle adult, flea beetl… Eggs are white and oval. Eggs are white and oval. They will overwinter in plant debris and weed hosts. Potato flea beetle on potato plant. They have six short legs. Adults mate and eggs are deposited on the soil surface and in its cracks near potato plants. Since flea beetles tend to stay around potato plants, crop rotation may play a key role. Although the potato beetle (Leptinotarsa decemlineata) is often associated with Colorado, these little pests are found all across the United States. This species resembles the potato flea beetle but has black legs and slightly hairy wing covers. These crops would include cabbages, lettuces, peppers, tomatoes, potatoes, kale, eggplant and a host of different food plants. The potato flea beetle is a very tiny beetle, shiny black in coloration. Larvae that feed on roots, stolons, and tubers also cause damage. The females lay eggs in the soil at the base of sweetpotato or other plants that are hosts. They tend to jump like fleas when disturbed. Flea beetles, for the most part, are attracted to small seedlings of common European vegetable crops. However, most flea beetles attack only a few, closely related plant species. Some species may have white or yellow stripes on their wing cases. Flea beetles are small beetles that jump when disturbed. Flea beetles are small but destructive pests in the home landscape. The tunnels are usually shallow but can extend as much as 1/2 inch deep. Potato flea beetles complete their development on plants belonging to the family Solanaceae, but the adults may feed on a wide range of unrelated plants.. When potato plants have emerged, many will fly into the potato field and the adults begin feeding on the foliage. All four species have shown they can exist within different climates, from a Mediterranean climate (Spain) to a temperate climate (USA and Canada). Pupa are rarely seen as they form several inches in the soil. Some parts of this site work best with JavaScript enabled. 4. Adult Epitrix species are similar in appearance, being dark brown/black (1.5 -2.0mm) with a characteristic enlarged femur on each of its hind legs (see figures right ©Jean-Francois Germain, LPNV Montpellier). Flea beetle adult, flea beetle leaf damage, flea beetle tuber damage (from left). The cycle normally takes four to six weeks but can be delayed to nine weeks under unfavorable conditions. Colorado potato beetles, in both adult and larval forms, chew the leaves on garden plants and can defoliate entire crops if you don’t get rid of them quickly. Though most tribes of the Galerucinae are suspect of rampant paraphyly in the present delimitation, the Alticini seem to form a good clade. In contrast to crucifer flea beetle, the potato flea beetle is shorter and broader (more ‘chunky’), has a more pitted and hairy body surface, and is less shiny, though both are all black and about 1/8 inch long. In light soils, many of the adults will go into a hibernation period below normal plowing depth. Extensive tuber feeding can make the tuber unmarketable for the fresh and processing markets but have no effect on seed tuber vigor. Adult – The potato flea beetle is about 2.5 mm long and brownish-black to black in color. They are slender, whitish, and about 0.25 inch long when mature. Flea beetles also feed on tomato, potato, pepper, beet, spinach, turnip, radish, plus almost every other vegetable to some degree. Potato bugs can also reduce the yield that you have in your garden beds. Adult – The oval, black, 2 mm long beetle has thickened, jumping hind legs. 207.764.3361 or 1.800.287.1462 (in Maine), 4-H Camp & Learning Center at Bryant Pond, 4-H Camp & Learning Center at Greenland Point, 4-H Camp & Learning Centers at Tanglewood & Blueberry Cove, Insect Pests, Plant Diseases & Pesticide Safety, Affiliated Programs, Partners & Resources, Non-Discrimination Statement & Disability Resources, Register for Workshops, Classes, & Events. These are the tuber flea beetle, Epitrix tuberis, and the west-ern potato flea beetle, Epitrix subcrinata (Fig. Flea beetles are a type of leaf beetle in the family Chrysomelidae. Adult - oval; shiny green to black; large hind legs; 1/16 inch Larvae - thread-like grubs; whitish; up to 1/3 inch, Overwinters as adults in debris or hibernate One to four generations per season Generation is 4 to 6 weeks up to 9 weeks, Foliage has shot-hole appearance Tubers have narrow tunnels and possibly scars, Crop rotation Weed control Systemic soil insecticides at planting Foliar insecticides when used for other pests, 105 Ag. 1. Western potato flea beetle (Epitrix subcrinata) Pest description and crop damage Three species of flea beetles-the western potato flea beetle (E. subcrinita), the tobacco flea beetle (E. hirtipennis), and the tuber flea beetle (E. tuberis)-are known foliage feeders in Pacific Northwest potato fields, especially west of the Cascades. However, there also are reports that the tuber holes can act as entryways for pathogenic bacteria such as soft rot and fungi such as dry rot making the tubers unsuitable for seed as well. Potato flea beetle damage will appear as a number of “shots” in the leaflet. Flea beetle control is an ongoing battle that relies upon three levels of approach. Potato flea beetle adults are small , about 0.1 inch in length, metallic greenish brown to black in color. Their damage can greatly reduce yield and even kill plants. Potato flea beetle: Adult. This insect is much easier to spot when the plants are small. Following egg hatch, and small white larvae feed on the roots of the newly planted seedlings, causi… The last generation of larvae cause the most economic damage by feeding on mature tubers. Choose Movento® for the best preventative foliar aphid control. DESCRIPTION. It prefers Solanaceae plants such as potatoes and tomatoes, and is generally found east of the Rocky Mountains in the United States. Potato flea beetle larvae feed on potato tubers. Note:Flea beetles transmit viral and bacterial diseases. They have six short legs. The adult flea beetle is small (~1/16 inch long), oblong, and dark brown to bronze in color. The Flea Beetle Lifecycle Larvae are small, cream-colored worms (1/8 – 1/3 inch long). Their feeding results in tubers with narrow, straight tunnels about 1/32 inch wide along the perimeter of the tuber. Pupa are rarely seen as they form several inches in the soil. Eggplant flea beetle, Epitrix fuscula Crotch, Chrysomelidae, COLEOPTERA. The flea beetle (family Chrysomelidae) is a pesky visitor to most gardens. Potato bugs (Leptinotarsa decemlineata) are a common pest in garden beds. An exception is the spinach flea beetle, which is 1/4-inch long. Of these the potato flea beetle (E. subcritita) and the tuber flea beetle (E. tuberis) are the most economically important. Adult flea beetles range from 1/16" (potato and striped beetles) to up to ½" in length for the spinach flea beetle. A slight chlorosis, yellowing, may occur around the holes. Adult flea beetles can cause serious damage to seedlings usually feeding on the undersides of leaves leaving numerous small round or irregularly shaped holes generally not all the way through the leaf. Even low numbers of larvae reduce sweet potato quality and marketable yield. Their hind legs are enlarged for jumping. They are deposited in soil crack near the surface and are not seen due to their very small size. This insect is much easier to spot when the plants are small. 1). Common, soil-applied systemic insecticides work well in controlling adults. UNL web framework and quality assurance provided by the, Visit the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, Apply to the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, Give to the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Strengthening Nebraska's Agricultural Economy. Tender seedlings may be particularly targeted. Mature larvae leave the potato structure and dig a small smooth earthen chamber in which they pupate. The larvae of the potato flea beetle will feed on potato tubers causing pits and roughness. The tuber flea beetle, found in the western half of the continent, is especially damaging as they scar the tuber badly and also drill deeper. Figure 3. The tuber flea beetle (Epitrix tuberis) is generally the most damaging to potato tubers. Description and Life History Two species of flea beetles are of major concern. Their body is whitish with a yellowish or light brown head. They damage plants by chewing small “shotholes” in the foliage. 2. The equally small tobacco flea beetle is yellowish-brown with a dark band across the wings. How to Get Rid of Flea Beetles Try this homemade spray to control flea beetles: 2 cups rubbing alcohol, 5 cups water, and 1 tablespoon liquid soap. There are many varieties of the insect, which attack a wide range of vegetation. Flea beetles can be found on a wide variety of plants. Communications Bldg.Lincoln, NE 68583-0918. 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