The introduced Mexican beetle

This pretty little beetle was in the backyard last week.

The leaf beetle, Zygogramma bicolorata

I couldn’t find it in my reference books or on the ‘net so I asked the ever-helpful Queensland Museum, who identified it as the parthenium or Mexican beetle, Zygogramma bicolorata. It was introduced from Mexico into Australia and India in the 1980s, to control parthenium, an agricultural weed of national significance. It seems to have been successful, eating the leaves down so much that the plant eventually dies off.

It’s nice to hear a successful biological control story for a change.

This entry was posted in Animals on land, Insects and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to The introduced Mexican beetle

  1. Kathy Pearce says:

    I just had a quick look around some of your posts.

    I love the weird names used in naming … species. Clearly those people are having fun!

    Thanks for all the work you do in creating your blogs – it is very generous of you.

    Kath

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