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Willow Leaf Beetle

Jan Liska, Forestry and Game Management Research Institute, Bugwood.org
Plagiodera versicolora (Laicharting); Family: Chrysomelidae.  Adults and larvae of the imported willow leaf beetle both feed on foliage of willows during the summer months. Adult chew holes and notches in the leaves. The larvae skeletonize the leaves, feeding on both sides of the leaves and eating the tissue between the veins. With a heavy infestation, all the leaves may turn brown. Trees with a heavy infestation may appear dead or scorched because of the brown skeletonized leaves. Lighter infestations may cause the foliage to appear "dirty" or partly brown from skeletonization.

The beetles are stout, oval, metallic bluish-green, about 1/8 inch in length. The larvae are slug-like in form with a tapering abdomen, and bluish-black in color. Larvae are about 1/4 inch long when mature, and usually feed on the willow foliage in groups.

Hosts: Several varieties of willow and poplar, with weeping willow being especially susceptible. 
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