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Pest Information

Dichondra flea beetle

Dichondra flea beetle

  • Latin Name: Chaetocnema repens
  • Common Name: Dichondra flea beetle
  • Other Names: N/A

Pest Details

Dichondra flea beetle

Origin:

This is a native beetle in North America.

Biology:

Where dichondra is used as a ground cover or turf this beetle can do serious damage. The adult beetles feed on the leaves while the larvae feed on the roots, and larval feeding can kill the plants while adult feeding disfigures and discolors the leaves. Bermudagrass turf may also be fed upon by this beetle. Females deposit their eggs on the soil and the larvae develop to the adult stage in about 1 month.

Identification:

Adult beetles are very small, only about 1/16th inch long. They are solid black with a slightly metallic tint to them, and with greatly enlarged hind femurs that allow them to jump instantly when disturbed. This jumping habit is allows for monitoring for the beetles by passing a hand over the dichondra and watching for the beetles to jump.

Characteristicts Important to Control:

When populations of the beetle are high enough that damage is expected a residual insecticide can be applied over the turf to kill them. The adult beetles may be present from March to September in warm regions.

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