janwApril 15, 2008

what are these black beetles with the orange heads that are all over this past week? they are eating my snapdragons and are flying and crawling everywhere? The Palo Verde beetle? I have never had an infestation like this in the 7 years I have been here. anything I can do to save my garden?

thanks. jan

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can you post a piucture? this may help in identifying the bug. I know the assasin bug is orange, and loves gardens.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2008 at 5:54PM
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I think they are gone now after I went after them with bayer flower spray. they were about 2-3 inches long black with orange head. a beetle of some sort. someone said they were palo verde beetles they were crawling around all week many of them and really devoured my poor snaps, hopefully they will recover

thanks for the response and any help you can come up with for future reference,

    Bookmark   April 20, 2008 at 7:30PM
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haname(z9 AZ NE Phoenix)

Hi Janw,

Is it the Arizona Blister Beetle Lytta magister?

Here is a link that might be useful: Google search Lytta magister

    Bookmark   April 20, 2008 at 9:56PM
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thanks haname.
it certainly looks like it. I have never seen them before but they are running around our az. area this year as they are around my son`s yard about 10 miles from here.
any further suggestions would be appreciated and if they appear again will get a picture and try to post it if I can figure out how.
thanks again.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2008 at 8:05PM
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Although damage caused by blister beetles might be a problem, there is a good side to this critter. The blister beetle hatchlings feed on grasshopper eggs. Without the beetles to keep down their populations, you might be dealing with an entirely different pest - and one that has a voracious appetite.

Numbers of these two insects vary from year to year as they keep each other in check.

As far as palo verde beetles, these guys live underground and feed on roots of trees - usually the Mexican Palo Verde. Trees in stress are the most vulnerable to their munching. The adult 3-inch, black/brown beetles emerge in the summer during the monsoon season. Its the larvae (grubs) that do damage to the roots - adults are just scary, especially at night.

Here is a link that might be useful: Palo Verder Borer

    Bookmark   April 22, 2008 at 6:08PM
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thanks for the info very informative. hope I am rid of them though.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2008 at 7:38PM
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