Skeletonizing Leaf Beetle

a Chrysomelidae in s.f. Galerucinae, from Eldoret, Kenya, photo © by Michael Plagens

Observed feeding on flowers of a nutsedge in a subsistence farm in Eldoret, Kenya. January 2012. It appears to be close to Monolepta.

These beetles are likely to be both friend and foe to the small farmer in rural Kenya. In the photo the beetle is feeding on one of the more significant weeds that farmers must deal with. The larvae, or grubs, on the other hand are likely to be feeding on the roots or leaves of a crop plant. I hope to identify on future trips what plants the larvae might be feeding on and thus reducing the yield. As these beetles fly from plant to plant they might also contribute to the spread of plant pathogens.

Chrysomelidae -- Leaf Beetle Family
Galerucinae -- Skeletonizing Leaf Beetles

More Information:

Kenya Natural History

Copyright Michael J. Plagens, page created 02 February 2012.