Pacific Pests, Pathogens and Weeds - Online edition

Pacific Pests, Pathogens, Weeds & Pesticides

Calligrapha beetle (352)

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  • Probably widespread through introduction. A beetle used in biocontrol of Sida, e.g., Sida acuta and Sida rhombifolia (common wireweed & Paddy's lucerne) causing severe defoliation.  
  • Native of Mexico. Introduced into Australia, Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Vanuatu. Present in New Caledonia.
  • Eggs laid on Sida, larvae remain together until last moult, adults brown then bright green with black markings. Adults spread on the wing.
  • Biosecurity: need to test potential harm to native Sida (and other) species before release.
  • Survival affected by condition of Sida; poor in dry seasons, needing reintroductions.
  • Collect in wet season (at least 50); release together; check after 2-3 weeks for eggs/larvae, and later adults. Distribute further when beetles established over several square metres.
Common Name

Calligrapha beetle

Scientific Name

Calligrapha pantherina

AUTHOR Grahame Jackson
1Waterhouse DF, Norris KR (1987) Sida acuta Burman f. Biological Control Pacific Prospects. Inkata Press. Information Julien MH, et al. (Eds.) (2012) Biological control of weeds in Australia. CSIRO Publishing. pp. 525–526. (; and CABI  (2017) Sida acuta (sida). Crop Protection Compendium. (; and from Biological control of sida. Department of Land Resource Management. Northern Territory Government. ( Photo 1 Mani Mua, SPC, Sigatoka Research Station, Fiji; Photos 2,4&5 Celia Symonds, University of NSW, Sydney, Australia.

Produced with support from the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research under project HORT/2016/185: Responding to emerging pest and disease threats to horticulture in the Pacific islands, implemented by the University of Queensland and the Secretariat of the Pacific Community.

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