Monday, August 27, 2007

Sweet Potato Leaf Beetle

Sweet Potato Leaf Beetle (Typophorus nigritus)

This is one of the 35,000 described species of leaf beetles. (It's estimated that there actually be as many as 60,000 species.) Obviously, with that many species within a family (Chrysomelidae), there is a gread deal of variation, but there are still many little, green, metallic leaf beetles quite similar to this one -- so many that I wouldn't have even attempted a genus/species ID. However, one of the experts on BugGuide says that it's a Sweet Potato Leaf Beetle so who am I to argue? At least I found it in the right place, munching on the leaf of a wild morning glory, a very close relative of the sweet potato.


Evan J said...

I get mixed feelings about metallic looking bugs.

They have that nice appealing shine to them, for some odd reason though I want to keep some distance.

- It might be part of natures warning system.