Mating Orchid Loving Leaf Beetles from Thailand

Subject: Pumpkin Beetle
Location: Thailand, Chiang Mai
March 2, 2015 8:01 pm
Hello Daniel,
thank you and you are right after searching for the name.
Here is something that might interest you:
This is an “orchid lover” … a real pest at orchid nurseries here in Thailand.
People call it “Pumpkin beetle” (Aulacophora abdominalis) but it isn’t one. Look at black legs and antennae.
And it’s neither Stethopachys formosa or Lema pectoralis, but close to them.
The bug and its larvae love orchid flowers, especially these of the Aeridinae group (Vanda, Rhynchostylis, Seidenfadenia and all of their hybrids), Dendrobium and Spathoglottis.
Regards … Ricci

Mating Leaf Beetles
Mating Leaf Beetles

Hi Ricci,
In the future, please submit new requests by using our standard submission form.  We realize it is easier for you to just attach additional images to a previous response, but it makes our postings so much easier if we are able to use the format of our submission form.  Thanks so much for sending us images of two phases of this Leaf Beetle.  We haven’t the time to research its identity this morning, but we are posting the images and we will provide additional feedback at a later time.
  We hope the eggs are not exported with the orchids because the introduction of a major orchid pest can wreak havoc on orchid nurseries around the globe as orchids are such a popular gift item.

Leaf Beetle Larva
Leaf Beetle Larva

Update:  March 4, 2015
We did locate this similar search for an identification on the Dokmai Dogma Drama In The Orchid Nursery posting.

Hi Daniel,
the orchid nurseries that export their plants use so much poison (most of it is forbidden in Europe) … no egg or Beetle will survive this.
When I asked a friend who own a nursery about this beetle, she answered:
“For bug (Pumpkin beetle) use Dicrotophos and Sticking Agent spray 5 days per time. And larva use Abamectin and Sticking Agent.”
Abamectin and Dicrotophos are highly toxic and dangerous for the environment.
– In Australia the black and yellow Dendrobium beetle (Stethopachys formosa) is a pest in orchid nurseries.
– Lema pectoralis has been reported from orchid nurseries in Thailand.

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