Leaf Beetles (Chrysomelidae)

Leaf beetles are a beetle family of at least 37,000 species, though there may be 50,000 or more, making them one of the largest families of beetles currently seen globally.

Common Beetles Belonging to this Family

Scientific Classification

These beetles are separated into 12 subfamilies, consisting of various genera.

1. Bruchinae

Amblycerini

  • Amblycerus
  • Spermophagus
  • Zabrotes

Bruchini

  • Abutiloneus
  • Acanthoscelides
  • Algarobius
  • Althaeus
  • Bonaerius
  • Caryedes
  • Cosmobruchus
  • Ctenocolum
  • Dahlibruchus
  • Gibbobruchus
  • Lithraeus
  • Margaritabruchus
  • Meibomeus
  • Megasennius
  • Merobruchus
  • Mimosestes
  • Neltumius
  • Neobruchidius
  • Palpibruchus
  • Pectinibruchus
  • Penthobruchus
  • Pseudopachymerina
  • Pygiopachymerus
  • Rhipibruchus
  • Scutobruchus
  • Sennius
  • Spatulobruchus
  • Stator
  • Stylantheus
  • Acanthobruchidius
  • Borowiecus
  • Bruchidius
  • Callosobruchus
  • Conicobruchus
  • Decellebruchus
  • Horridobruchus
  • Kingsolverius
  • Megabruchidius
  • Palaeoacanthoscelides
  • Parasulcobruchus
  • Pygobruchidius
  • Salviabruchus
  • Specularius
  • Sulcobruchus
  • Tuberculobruchus
  • Bruchus
  • Megacerus

Eubaptini

  • Eubaptus

Kytorhinini

  • Kytorhinus

Pachymerini

  • Aforedon
  • Caryedon
  • Caryotrypes
  • Exoctenophorus
  • Mimocaryedon
  • Caryopemon
  • Diedobruchus
  • Protocaryopemon
  • Butiobruchus
  • Caryobruchus
  • Caryoborus
  • Pachymerus
  • Mesopachymerus

Rhaebini

  • Rhaebus

Myanmaropini

  • Myanmarops

2. Cassidinae

  • Acromis
  • Agroiconota
  • Alurnus
  • Anisostena
  • Aspidimorpha
  • Baliosus
  • Basiprionota
  • Brachycoryna
  • Bruchia
  • Callispa
  • Callistola
  • Calyptocephala
  • Carinispa
  • Hypocassida
  • Tegocassis
  • Xenochalepus

3. Chrysomelinae

  • Agasta
  • Alfius
  • Calligrapha
  • Calomela
  • Cecchiniola
  • Chalcolampra
  • Chrysomela
  • Chrysolina
  • Colaphellus
  • Colaspidema
  • Crosita
  • Cyrtonastes
  • Cyrtonus
  • Dicranosterna
  • Doryphora
  • Entomoscelis
  • Gastrophysa
  • Geomela
  • Gonioctena
  • Hydrothassa
  • Labidomera
  • Lamprolina
  • Leptinotarsa
  • Linaedea
  • Machomena
  • Microtheca
  • Oomela
  • Oreina
  • Paleophaedon
  • Paropsides
  • Paropsis
  • Paropsisterna
  • Peltoschema
  • Phaedon
  • Phratora
  • Phola
  • Plagiodera
  • Prasocuris
  • Promechus
  • Proseicela
  • Rhaebosterna
  • Sclerophaedon
  • Smaragdina
  • Stenaspidiotus
  • Timarcha
  • Timarchida
  • Trachymela
  • Zira
  • Zygogramma

4. Criocerinae

Criocerini

  • Crioceris
  • Lilioceris

Lemini

  • Lema
  • Neolema
  • Oulema

5. Cryptocephalinae

Clytrini

Cryptocephalini

Fulcidacini

6. Donaciinae

  • Donacia
  • Donaciella
  • Macroplea
  • Neohaemonia
  • Plateumaris
  • Poecilocera

7. Eumolpinae

Bromiini

Caryonodini

Cubispini

Eumolpini

Euryopini

Habrophorini

Hemydacnini

Megascelidini

Merodini

Pygomolpini

Rosiroiini

Typophorini

8. Galerucinae

  • Acalymma
  • Agelastica
  • Aplosonyx
  • Arima
  • Asbecesta
  • Aulacophora
  • Belarima
  • Calomicrus
  • Cneorane
  • Diorhabda
  • Diabrotica
  • Euluperus
  • Exosoma
  • Falsoexosoma
  • Galeruca
  • Galerucella
  • Leptomona
  • Lochmaea
  • Longitarsus
  • Luperus
  • Marseulia
  • Menippus
  • Monolepta
  • Normaltica
  • Nymphius
  • Oides
  • Phyllobrotica
  • Poneridia
  • Psylliodes
  • Pyrrhalta
  • Sermylassa
  • Theone
  • Trirhabda
  • Xanthogaleruca
  • Yingaresca

9. Lamprosomatinae

Cachiporrini

  • Cachiporra

Lamprosomatini

  • Archelamprosomius
  • Asisia
  • Damzenius
  • Dorisina
  • Lamprosoma
  • Lamprosomoides
  • Lychnophaes
  • Oomorphoides
  • Oomorphus
  • Oyarzuna
  • Scrophoomorphus
  • Succinoomorphus
  • Xenoomorphus

Neochlamysini

  • Neochlamys
  • Pseudolychnophaes

Sphaerocharini

  • Sphaerocharis

10. Sagrinae

  • Ametalla
  • Atalasis
  • Carpophagus
  • Coolgardica
  • Diaphanops
  • Duboulaia
  • Mecynodera
  • Megamerus
  • Neodiaphanops
  • Polyoptilus
  • Prionesthis
  • Pseudotoxotus
  • Sagra
  • Eosagra
  • Gallopsis
  • Palaeatalasis
  • Pulchritudo

11. Spilopyrinae

  • Allsortsia
  • Bohumiljania
  • Cheiloxena
  • Dorymolpus
  • Hornius
  • Macrolema
  • Richmondia
  • Spilopyra
  • Stenomela

12. Synetinae

  • Syneta
  • Thricolema

Physical Description and Identification

Adult

Size: 0.0393-0.71 in (0.1-1.8 cm), with some reaching lengths of 1.4 in.

Color: They are shiny, with various colors like blue, coppery, golden, or green.

Other Characteristic Features: The beetles of this family are round and domed, with antennae half the length of their body and shell-like elytra covering their abdomen.

Larva

The larvae vary greatly in appearance depending on the species. For instance, Colorado potato beetle larvae are thick-bodied, while several tortoise beetles have spines running along their bodies. They go through several instars for around 21 days.

Pupa

Pupation occurs inside a cocoon on the underside of the leaves of the host plant.

Egg

Females lay orange or yellow eggs on the leaves of a preferred host plant.

Quick Facts

Lifespan 5 – 14 days
Distribution Tropics
Habitat Varied
Predators Bugs, earwigs, ground beetles, and lacewing larva
Seasons active May to July
Host plants Clover, cottonweed, cucumber, green beans, milkweed, pumpkins, and soybeans
Diet of adults Flowers, fruits, leaves, roots, and stems of any suitable plant

Identifying the Damage Caused by Them

The larva and adults chew through leaves which can cause stunted growth in younger plants but is primarily cosmetic in mature plants.

Did You Know

  • French zoologist Pierre André Latreille first described this family of beetles in 1802.