Unidentified pest and what to do

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  • #13319


    Had this email from Su:

    "I have a problem with wasps and also with a beetle, I think a sort of shield beetle. It has a black body and sticks its ‘hyperdermic like’ mouth parts into the caterpillar, sucking its insides out. I find many caterpillars dead and reduced to a limp skin. I have also found these beetles in the act attached to the caterpillars. Its awful. My area is Rotorua if that is any help.

    I have many berries and fruit in my garden which probably attracts aphids and then the wasps come to feed from the sticky sap the wasps leave. Unfortunately I do need the berries and don’t like to use sprays."

    I have sent her the Wasps and Aphids handout, and also suggested:

    Identify the pest – by following the steps on this website here.


    When you identify it, please post the full ID in the forum. In the meantime, I suggest you use net curtains to protect the bushes – but make sure you’ve got the pests off them first. Or you could wrap a piece of your swan plant up in the net curtain – I’m looking at getting some sleeves for this purpose – and you are bound to have some caterpillars already on the branch which you haven’t seen. Give it two weeks and then see if the leaves have been eaten to death. You can move the caterpillars if the branch gets eaten – hope that makes sense.

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  • #18797


    Yes Swansong, Landcare have being updating their site in regards to insects. They are doing a pretty good job too.




    Great link! Have they updated their site? Fabulous resource. Just been looking for a beetle-like affair that I had a “close encounter” with and the little twirp bit me under the arm while I was lying in the sun on my couch. 1st time I sorta ignored it as a little burning itch that sometimes you can get for no particular reason, and when it happened again I sorta brushed under my arm and the little rascal dropped out on the carpet! It was about a month ago and I had 2 wee red marks. No big deal … but still…. Anyway the nearest I could find to it was a longhorn beetle but that wasnt it. It MAY have been some kind of cricket.


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