Don’t be fooled! This is NOT a green ladybug! The cucumber beetle is a common pest that feeds on the vegetable gardens and may also attack ripening stone fruit, although it’s not fussy and can be found in many parts of the yard, even on roses. These beetles may spread cucumber mosaic virus or wilts in cucurbits (plants in the gourd family).
Adult beetles are shiny with black heads, long antennae, and about 1/4 inch long, and may be striped or spotted, depending upon species.
Management of these little bugs can be tricky. Most older plants can support significant numbers without serious damage. Protect emerging vegetable plants with cloth (often called floating row cover) and remove it when plants are old enough to tolerate damage. On stone-fruit trees, early harvest may be the only option. Providing a habitat for general predators is a good first step.
2 thoughts on “Those aren’t Green Ladybugs!”
What species is this! is it native? There are native beetles that look similar in CA actually they are beneficial. Please clarify.
The pictured insect is Diabrotica undecimpunctata, definitely not a beneficial in CA.