Bumble Flower Beetle

Bumble flower beetle adult.<br><h6>(Joseph Berger, Bugwood.org)</h6> Bumble flower beetle adult.

Bumble flower beetle adults feeding on sap.<br><h6>(Joseph Berger, Bugwood.org)</h6>
Bumble flower beetle adults feeding on sap.

When disturbed, bumble flower beetles play dead.<br><h6>(Joseph Berger, Bugwood.org)</h6>
When distrubed, bumble flower beetles play dead.

Bumble flower beetle larave.<br><h6>(Whitney Cranshaw, Colorado State University, bugwood.org)</h6>
Bumble flower beetle larvae.

HOSTS

  • Corn
  • Flowers
  • Fruit trees (injured or over-ripe fruit)

DESCRIPTION

Bumble flower beetle (BFB; Euphoria inda) is a common member of the scarab beetle family. Adults are 0.5-0.6 inches in length and 0.3-0.4 inches wide. They have yellowish-brown or cinnamon-colored outer wings with irregular rows of small black spots. The head, thorax, and underside of the body are densely hairy. When captured, adults may emit a defensive chemical with a pungent chlorine-like odor.

Larvae are white grubs and resemble June beetle grubs. Because they feed on soil or compost organic matter, they are beneficial in many situations.

Economic damage caused by adults feeding on plant parts is rare in Utah, and they seldom require control.

BIOLOGY

Adults lay eggs in the soil with high organic matter, or in compost during the first warm days of spring. As larvae develop, they feed on organic matter and rotting fruits and vegetables. They mature in June to July, and pupate at a depth of 2 to 5 inches. Adults emerge and become active between mid-August through the end of September, and then they seek a place to overwinter. There is only one generation per year.

SYMPTOMS

BFB grubs feed exclusively on soil organic matter, and do not cause plant damage. On rare occasions, adults may feed on certain plant parts, including the following:

  • Corn kernels during the silk stage
  • Injured fruits or vegetables
  • Ripe or overly ripe fruits
  • Flower parts including stamens

GENERAL MANAGEMENT

If bumble flower beetles are damaging corn or fruit, use the following cultural/physical control methods:

  • Remove decaying organic matter from the vicinity of the affected crop (compost piles, etc.).
  • Harvest fruits and vegetables in a timely manner, and remove damaged produce throughout the season.
  • Manually remove adult beetles from affected plants and place in a bucket with soapy water.

INSECTICIDES

Not Recommended.


Precautionary Statement: Utah State University and its employees are not responsible for the use, misuse, or damage caused by application or misapplication of products or information mentioned in this document. All pesticides are labeled with ingredients, instructions, and risks, and not all are registered for edible crops. “Restricted use” pesticides may only be applied by a licensed applicator. The pesticide applicator is legally responsible for proper use. USU makes no endorsement of the products listed in this publication.