Cottonwood Leaf Beetle
The Cottonwood Leaf Beetle (Chrysomela scripta) is a species of leaf beetle that feeds on the leaves of cottonwood trees (Populus species). The adult beetles are about 6-8 mm in length and are reddish-brown to black in color. They have a distinctive black stripe running down the middle of their backs, and their wings are covered in small black dots. The larvae of the Cottonwood Leaf Beetle are pale yellow and have black heads. They are about 8-10 mm in length and are covered in short, spiky hairs.
Cottonwood Leaf Beetles are native to North America and can be found in a variety of habitats, including forests, fields, and gardens. They are most commonly found in areas with cottonwood trees, which they use as a food source. In addition to feeding on the leaves of cottonwood trees, Cottonwood Leaf Beetles can also feed on the leaves of willows, aspens, and other species of poplar.
Cottonwood Leaf Beetles can cause significant damage to cottonwood trees, especially when they are present in large numbers. The adult beetles eat the leaves of the tree, which can defoliate the tree and make it more susceptible to other pests and diseases. The larvae also feed on the leaves of the tree and can cause further damage. If a tree is heavily infested, it may die as a result of the damage caused by the Cottonwood Leaf Beetles.