Subject: What is this bug?
Location: Suffolk, Virginia
May 17, 2015 1:14 pm
These little bugs are all over my deck, and the willow tree nearby. What are they, and how can I get rid of them?
Signature: Robin Moore
You are being troubled by Cottonwood Leaf Beetle Larvae, Chrysomela scripta, and according to BugGuide, it: “used to be considered a pest when willows were grown commercially for baskets, now of little economic consequence.” Featured Creatures has a very nice page on this species where it states: “The cottonwood leaf beetle, Chrysomela scripta Fabricius, is one of the most economically-important pests of managed cottonwood, aspen and some poplar and willow species. Although it does not present a serious pest problem in forests, often it is a severe pest of urban ornamental trees. This leaf feeder has several generations each year, may cause extensive leaf loss, and can consequently reduce stem volume up to 70% (Coyle et al. 2005).”