Subject: Unknown on my potato plants
Location: Norfolk, MA
June 9, 2014 7:00 am
This bug is on my potato plants in eastern Mass. Thie first time I found one I picked the leaf it was stuck to and took it to my CSA farmer, who had no ideas. They sort of suction onto the leaves. this year, there are more. I have some leaf damage, but not too bad. Then the other day my daughter was trying to get one to crawl/move, and away it flew! no visible wings when it’s sitting there, and it flies in a slow kinda clumsy way. Just trying to figure out if they are damaging to my garden, how to deal with them.
These are mating Clavate Tortoise Beetles, and the adults and larvae feed on the leaves of plants in the family Solanacea, which includes potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, eggplant and other similar garden crops.
Thank you! I’ve never seen anything like these, and based on your identification I’ll leave them alone unless the leaf damage gets to be too much. Then possibly beetle relocation program! (though I have read they like tomato, pepper and squash plants, all of which I have this year)