Larvae of Lilioceris lilii lily beetles

Larvae of Lilioceris lilii lily beetles

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Credit: DR JEREMY BURGESS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Larvae of the lily beetle (Lilioceris lilii) feeding on leaves of a hybrid garden lily (Asiatic, Division 1). 9 larvae appear in the picture; as they feed, they camouflage themselves in their own frass, resulting in a shapeless shiny black object about 4-5mm long. Above centre to right, a larva is visible which is not camouflaged (orange/brown skin). Damage to the leaves is visible above centre right, and at the bottom of the picture. Lily beetles are a serious pest for lily growers; the adult beetles cause damage by eating foliage and flowers. Infestations of the larvae can defoliate plants completely. The insects overwinter as adults in plant debris and emerge in spring, when they also feed on species of Fritillaria. A Japanese species, L. lilii was first found breeding in the UK in 1942.

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Keywords: animal, asiatic lily, beetles, biological, biology, botanical, botany, damage, egg, entomological, entomology, epidermis, fauna, feeding, flora, frass, fritillaria, garden pest, horticultural, horticulture, insect, insect camouflage, larva, larvae, leaf, leaves, lilioceris lilii, lily, lily beetle, nature, pest, plant pest, wildlife, zoological, zoology

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