Colorado nightshade pest or who is the Colorado potato beetle, methods of dealing with it

Once the Eurasian continent was free of the Colorado potato beetle. Indeed, this beetle completely destroyed the potato planting in this state in the middle of the 19th century. We will try to figure out what is terrible about the Colorado potato beetle, methods of dealing with it, whether it is possible to protect the site from this pest.


  • Colorado potato beetle, zoological description
  • Methods of dealing with the Colorado potato beetle
  • Traditional methods and prevention of infection of plantings with the Colorado potato beetle

Colorado potato beetle, zoological description

According to zoological taxonomy, the Colorado potato beetle belongs to the Leaf beetle family from the Coleoptera order. This beetle is native to the northern and eastern regions of Mexico. Here the beetle ate wild nightshade and tobacco. Apart from the Colorado potato beetle, only one or two closely related species could feed on the ground parts of these plants.

The rest of the insects avoided or flew around the nightshade. This is due to the high content of corned beef alkaloid in its leaves. The size of adults reaches 1 cm or slightly more. The body of the beetle is about 0.6 cm wide. The shape of the body is oval, the back is convex, yellow-orange. Each elytra has five black stripes.

This sign formed the basis of the Latin name for the beetle - ten-line. The wings of the Colorado are well developed. He is capable of flying long distances. Despite the fact that the beetle is native to Mexico, it tolerates the climate of European countries well. I must say that the beetle appeared on the territory of Europe at the end of the 19th century. They brought it from overseas along with household goods.

While the war was going on in Europe at the beginning of the twentieth century, the beetle bred and established itself in the famous French province of Bordeaux. A few decades later, the beetle mastered Europe and the western regions of the USSR.

It was quite difficult to fight him, since wintering adults burrowed to a depth of 0.3-0.4 m. these are pale yellow eggs. It is important that the eggs are attached by the female beetle from the underside and are hardly noticeable from above.

A person begins to beat anxiety when the larvae that come out begin to actively destroy the leaves of potatoes, tomatoes, eggplants, and petunias. As they feed, they grow and change brown to pink. Here they become more noticeable, but it is too late.

A new focus of damage to agricultural crops by larvae of the Colorado potato beetle has already formed. As they grow older, the larvae move to neighboring plants.

And at the age of three weeks, they burrow into the soil, where pupation takes place. An insect that has emerged from the pupa can get out, or it can remain in the ground until the next season. The female can lay up to 70-80 eggs at a time.

And during the season, it will give life to 300-500 new beetles. The pest is a great danger not only for potatoes, but also for other vegetables from the Solanaceae family. It is difficult to fight him, since he is very tolerant to most pesticides.

In addition, it is very difficult to detect and destroy adult beetles wintering in the soil. The beetle has natural enemies, but sometimes, due to differences in life cycles, they do not have time to cause significant harm to the population. In some cases, the beetle manages to practically destroy the plantings. We will try to figure out what methods can be used to defeat a dangerous pest.

Methods of dealing with the Colorado potato beetle

Many chemical and mechanical methods of fighting the Colorado potato beetle can have different effectiveness, but there is no absolutely reliable one among them. However, it is possible and necessary to fight the pest. Here biological control measures can come to the rescue.


The six-legged rider edovum is a natural enemy of the Colorado potato beetle. An adult, of course, cannot be defeated, but this insect can cope with the laying of eggs. The female edovum lays her offspring in the eggs of the Colorado potato beetle. One individual can populate up to 1000 pest eggs with its offspring.

Edovum is especially effective against the second generation of the beetle. To combat the pest, a technology has been developed for growing edovum crops to provide potato farms. Helps fight foreign beetle and breeding of carnivorous ground beetles, gold-headed beetles and some other insects.

Chemistry against the Colorado potato beetle

The insecticidal preparations of the last century caused the beetle to adapt quickly. Therefore, it is currently desirable to use new generation drugs:

  • "Bankol" - the drug is obtained from the annelids of marine worms, their poison is very effective against the Colorado potato beetle
  • "Regent" - the drug affects the pest at any stage of development
  • "Commander" - in its action is similar to the previous tool
  • "Aktara" is a systemic insecticide that acts on the beetle through plant tissues

Video about the fight against the Colorado potato beetle:

You need to use drugs strictly according to the instructions.

Traditional methods and prevention of infection of plantings with the Colorado potato beetle

On small plantings of nightshade crops, mechanical harvesting of larvae gives good results. All collected pests must be put in glass jars, and then poured with a concentrated solution of sodium chloride. If the larvae have not yet appeared, then the found clutches can be removed together with the leaves. In addition, you can use the following methods of struggle:

  • planting among potatoes marigolds, marigolds, nasturtiums
  • spraying with a mixture of laundry soap and ash, for 10 liters of water take a bar of soap and two liters of ash
  • spraying with urea, it is enough to dissolve 100 g of the substance in 10 l of water
  • spraying with water infusion from the Colorado beetles themselves, for this insects are collected, placed in a jar and poured with water, covered with a lid, after 5-6 days the poisonous infusion is ready


Currently, planting non-GMO varieties that the Colorado potato beetle does not eat, as they have coarser ground parts, is a good prevention. The device of grooves - traps along the landings, the larvae cannot overcome due to the inclination of the walls.

Acquisition of healthy planting material, digging the soil with overturning layers in the autumn. Sometimes, for unexplained reasons, it happens that the Colorado potato beetle disappears and ceases to harm the plantings.

Watch the video: Colorado Potato Beetle in the Columbia Basin (January 2022).