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#1 Mon 23 Apr 07 11:03pm

abdullahcohn

Forum champ
Occupation Occupied
From My House
Member since Fri 11 Nov 05

They look too good to kill.

Rosemary beetles they look too good to kill.

Who grows their own herbs here, and I don’t mean the sort hippies smoke?
If you do, you may have noticed that your rosemary or lavender is covered with beetles.
I noticed it, but I can’t do much about it, because they look too good to kill!
http://www.amanita-photolibrary.co.uk/p … 23_thm.jpg

I haven’t got anything against killing pests; it’s just that these are so beautiful!

Last edited by abdullahcohn (Tue 24 Apr 07 2:08pm)

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#2 Tue 24 Apr 07 9:13am

mrs.arellano

Member
Member since Tue 22 Jun 04

Re: They look too good to kill.

They are beautiful - Chrysolina americana or Chrysolina cerealis - either way, absolutely stunning!  We don't have those in California (Still not sure as to why the species could be americana if it's a European native - probably because you've done a better job at identification x).  At any rate, I will have to take a closer look at live rosemary and lavender the next time I'm in Europe.

Actually - isn't Chrysolina cerealis a protected species in the UK?

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#3 Tue 24 Apr 07 9:56am

abdullahcohn

Forum champ
Occupation Occupied
From My House
Member since Fri 11 Nov 05

Re: They look too good to kill.

I think it might be because the markings look like the Colorado beetle; They are both part of the subfamily Chrysomelinae.

Anyway the protected beetle is the Chrysolina cerealis rainbow leaf beetle. They are part of the same family but feed on tyme.

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#4 Tue 24 Apr 07 5:46pm

mrs.arellano

Member
Member since Tue 22 Jun 04

Re: They look too good to kill.

The rainbow leaf beetle may feed exclusively on tyme but it's not improbable that, given the right amount of environmental stress (i.e. habitat destruction), the population would seek out alternatives to their diet.  Wild tyme is after all part of the Lamiaceae (or Labiatae) family.  Lamiaceae, more commonly known as the 'mint family' encompasses tyme, rosemary, lavender, sage, oregano, basil, ect. which suggests that the probability of finding an endangered Chrysolina cerealis on your lovely rosemary is rather high.

I suppose you should consider yourself lucky to have them breeding in your rosemary.  As far as I know and so long as their numbers are low for the size of your plant, you shouldn't have to worry about any adverse side effects for your plant - and for you - you should still use your rosemary, just watch the undersides of the leaves for eggs.  Hhhew - I just grossed myself out with the thought of biting into beetle eggs with my rosemary.  On second thought - perhaps you should consider an indoor rosemary strictly for use in the kitchen.

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#5 Tue 24 Apr 07 6:55pm

mrs.arellano

Member
Member since Tue 22 Jun 04

Re: They look too good to kill.

Um - big edit.  tyme = thyme

Erm - another edit.  Your pic above is labeled as Chrysolina cerealis.  The actual beetle may be mislabeled.  I'm thinking you have yourself a Chrysolina americana infestation.  If that's the case - no worries about picking them off.

Last edited by mrs.arellano (Tue 24 Apr 07 7:05pm)

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#6 Tue 24 Apr 07 11:33pm

kittenclaws

Forum champ
From The Med
Member since Tue 06 Jul 04

Re: They look too good to kill.

Thank you abdullah.

Following your post I googled a particularly lovely bug I've seen in my garden and I stumbled upon this wonderful website.

http://www.whatsthatbug.com/beetles7.html

It's fascinating. And there are one or two (or three) on there that I'd run screaming from, never to be seen again.

(Are you a Fireman yet?).

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#7 Tue 24 Apr 07 11:54pm

mercedes

Forum champ
Occupation Save a tree, eat a Beaver
From the boonies
Member since Tue 22 Jun 04

Re: They look too good to kill.

Kitten, I have a bug similar to the rainbow scarab in your link, on one of my key chains encased in glass---I have no idea what the name of the real bug is----however over the years the glass has chipped away and you can almost touch one of its legs, and I always get a funny feeling that one day it will escape and come out and bite me.

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#8 Wed 25 Apr 07 12:03am

GeoffP

Forum champ
Occupation Retired Clergy & Computer Consultant
From Bradford, West Yorks
Member since Mon 03 Jul 06

Re: They look too good to kill.

Hmmmm - Rosemary fed Chrysolina cerealis - I wonder if they are edible - maybe we couldcome up with a recipe for dedicated entomophagists smile

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#9 Wed 25 Apr 07 12:28am

mrs.arellano

Member
Member since Tue 22 Jun 04

Re: They look too good to kill.

http://whatsthatbug.com/

Excellent site!  I've set my daughter on the website and every two minutes she's on me with 'Mom!  Look at this one!'.  Good call Kitten! xx

Geoff - entomophagists.  Help me with this one:

entom = insect

phagist = ingest

entomophagists = bug eater?  Eh - most of us here eat lobster and the like - they're bugs too.  Should probably wait until the Chrysolina cerealis population has better numbers before we start eating them.  Not sure how being thrown in jail for being a bug eater would fly with your prison cellmate.

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#10 Wed 25 Apr 07 12:56am

kittenclaws

Forum champ
From The Med
Member since Tue 06 Jul 04

Re: They look too good to kill.

I have a feeling abdulla didn't think he'd set us off on this trail but isn't it strange how things go? I found that site and looked at every bug and read the comments.

I think I indentified horrible jumping things that emerged from our first woodpile and I don't like jumping ugly things. I don't like treading on them and killing them either but it's them or me.

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