Subject: friend or foe?
Location: bridge city, texas
September 16, 2014 3:54 pm
My friend found this on her morning glory. We aren’t sure if its a bug, larvae or egg. We have researched and although we found a few things that looked similar, we haven’t found an exact match or anyone who could help. You’re our last resort! Please help!
Signature: thank you! Crystal
These are Leaf Beetle Larvae in the family Chrysomelidae, and we strongly suspect that they are the larvae of Tortoise Beetles. Several species of Tortoise Beetles including the Golden Tortoise Beetle have larvae that feed on morning glories, but your larvae look different, though similar, to the images we are able to locate on BugGuide. Fecal matter that is carried over the back of the larva is a characteristic of many Tortoise Beetles, and it is evident in your image. Many Tortoise Beetles are very host specific, so if you don’t mind that your morning glory leaves are being eaten, at least you don’t need to worry about the larvae spreading to other plants.