Insect identification > Coleoptera > Rhynchophora > Clover leaf weevil

Clover leaf weevil

The clover leaf weevil (Hypera punctata Fab.). - This pest of clover is a native of Europe and was first found in the United States about 1850-1855. It is now present in most of the regions where clover and alfalfa are grown.

The adults are about a quarter of an inch long, stout, brownish to black insects. They appear in May to July and feed on clover, mainly at night, till September, when egg-laying begins and continues until into November.

The earlier laid eggs hatch the same fall and the young feed during the day, chiefly on the leaves, until cold weather, then hibernate, resuming their feeding in the spring. Late-laid eggs winter in this stage and hatch in the spring.

Pupation in cocoons formed as a fine network of silken threads occurs in May and June and the first beetles emerge before the end of the former month. There is but one generation a year.

Injury to clover would be severe were it not for the fact that this insect is attacked by a fungous disease which usually nearly wipes out the insects in a single season and only rarely does it escape long enough to do any great amount of injury. Control measures, then, are not often necessary.