Cockchafer or May bug is widespread and can be found in almost all crops. They cause serious damage especially to root crops.
Scientific name: Melolontha melolontha, M. hippocastani
More names: Chafer grubs, Doodlebug, May bug, Common cockchafer
Greek name: Μηλολόνθη ή Ασπροσκούληκο
Cockchafer or May bug eat the roots and young plants turn yellow, show wilting and eventually die. In beets and potatoes they open deep holes and tunnels. When cereals are attacked at an advanced stage, the grains in the ears are not well filled and are shriveled.
The larvae reach up to 65 mm in length and are whitish in color on the anterior part and grey-blue on the posterior part. The head, three pairs of legs and thorax are light brown in color. Their shape resembles a hook and they have a thickened belly.
The adults (beetles) reach 30 mm in length with a reddish-brown color, except for the head and thorax, which are black. The antennas are lamellar (ending in a fan-like shape). Melolontha hippocastani is slightly shorter than M. melolontha and has a black margin on its elytra (hard wings).
A characteristic feature is the dark triangular germ between the elytra.
Cockchafer or May bug completes a generation every 3-5 years. It causes the most damage in the year preceding pupation.
Tags: PLANTS ENEMY