What attracts leaf beetles?



Leaf beetles, Chrysomelidae, family Polyphaga (beetles), approximately 30,000-40,000 species worldwide, approximately 600 species in Central Europe.

Leaf beetles are the most species-rich family in the animal kingdom after weevils and scarab beetles (see table).

They are closely related to long-horned beetles and weevils, sharing only 4 visible tarsal segments with them, the fourth being small and almost indistinguishable.

Leaf beetles

What attracts leaf beetles?

These include, among others, the Colorado potato beetle (see figure), straw beetles, cockroaches, flea beetles, guard beetles, and hedgehog beetles (see figure).

With few exceptions, leaf beetles are herbivores. When it comes to choosing forage plants, many species specialize in a few (oligophagous) or even just one (omnivorous).

Many German names refer to these plants: Colorado potato beetle, alder leaf beetle, or hen lily.

 Females usually lay their eggs in small clumps on leaves or stems. Young larvae hatch after 2-3 weeks.

Many German names refer to these plants

It is not uncommon for them to start chewing the delicate parts of the plant in groups, leaving the veins intact (“window eating”).

If only these ribs remain, the leaves appear skeletal (“skeletal rot”). As the larvae grow larger, the group disperses and the larvae, now living individually, eat holes in the leaves (“holes”).

Later, the whole leaves are eaten, which leads to baldness in case of mass infestation Pests such as leaf beetles destroy the leaves and buds of plants and can empty your bed in no time. Here’s what you can do to prevent this.

Identify leaf beetles

  1. Identify leaf beetles
  2. What do leaf beetles eat?
  3. Fight leaf beetles
  4. Prevention of leaf beetle

Bare spots in the litter and eaten leaves: Leaf beetles are greedy pests. 

If you are familiar with this problem, we have good news. Leaf beetles can also be avoided and controlled. We will tell you how to do it here.

Fight leaf beetles

Identify leaf beetles

The leaf beetle family (Chrysomelidae) includes more than 470 different beetles in Germany alone. 

These are usually named after the plant they attack. For example, Colorado potato beetles, alder leaf beetles, and willow leaf beetles belong to the family of leaf beetles.

However, since there are so many different species, identifying leaf beetles is not easy.

 They can be colorful, shiny metallic, or plain. However, all leaf beetles have two characteristics in common: an oval body shape and a size between 1-18 mm.

The leaf beetle family (Chrysomelidae)

Although leaf beetles have wings, they rarely use them and only fly very short distances. The leaf beetle infection period begins in April.

In May, the first larvae emerge from the egg-laying site in the plant branches.

 Before the leaf beetles bury themselves in the ground to hibernate at the end of August, they bore holes in plant branches and lay their eggs there.

What do leaf beetles eat

What do leaf beetles eat?

Leaf beetles mainly eat the leaves of the plant, but sometimes they also eat the buds and flowers.

Because leaf beetles eat parts of the leaves, holes are created in them.

This is characteristic of burrowing pests. This plant is weakened by the piercing of the leaf beetles and their larvae and can die if the infection is severe.

Fight leaf beetles

Fight leaf beetles

From April you should check your plants and collect beetles and larvae if they are infected. 

If the infestation is more severe, there are solutions to deal with leaf beetles.

However, it is not always necessary to resort to chemical agents. For example, natural enemies also help against leaf beetles.

Prevention of leaf beetle

Leaf beetles are on the menu of hedgehogs, frogs, and ducks. If you create shelters such as hedges or ponds, beneficial animals will feel comfortable there and naturally fight off leaf beetles.

If the infestation is too severe, products based on neem or canola oil can help against so-called “biting” pests such as leaf beetles.

Prevention of leaf beetle

It is said that soap suds or nettle fertilizer help prevent leaf beetles. To make nettle fertilizer, pour hot water over the nettles and let the mixture steep for at least 24 hours. Then the plant enhancer is sprayed on the plants.

Other preventive measures include vegetable netting or adhesive rings. 

Before you put the vegetable netting on the bed, you should check the bed for the presence of leaf beetles and their larvae and eggs. If you notice, delete them.

Leaf beetles are on the menu of hedgehogs,

Then, ideally before April (the period of leaf beetle infestation), you can put vegetable netting over the bed to keep out other pests as well.

The glue ring also helps with larger trees because it wraps around the trunk. Leaf beetles stick to them like other crawling insects.


leaf beetles can pose a significant threat to plant health, as they can quickly defoliate plants and weaken them.

However, with proper identification, control, and prevention measures, gardeners can effectively manage leaf beetle infestations and protect their plants.

leaf beetles can pose

By monitoring for signs of leaf beetle activity, utilizing natural predators and products, and implementing preventive measures like physical barriers and deterrents, gardeners can minimize the damage caused by leaf beetles and maintain the health of their plants.

With proactive management strategies in place, gardeners can enjoy thriving gardens free from the devastation of leaf beetle infestations.

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