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Dogbane Leaf Beetle (Chrysochus auratus)


Detailing the physical features, habits, territorial reach and other identifying qualities of the Dogbane Leaf Beetle.


 Updated: 2/28/2018; Authored By Staff Writer; Content ¬©www.InsectIdentification.org



  Dogbane Leaf Beetle  
Picture of Dogbane-Leaf-Beetle
Picture of Dogbane-Leaf-Beetle Picture of Dogbane-Leaf-BeetlePicture of Dogbane-Leaf-Beetle


The glimmering Dogbane Leaf Beetle may be a dog's best friend or a plant's nemesis, but it is always lovely to look at.





Metallic hues make this beetle stand out from the rest. Its tiny size means it might get overlooked, but in the right light, the shiny elytra captivate observers. Dogbane Leaf Beetles have green heads. The elytra are a copper, gold and emerald color and has a tiny dimpled texture. Even its green legs have a metallic gleam.

Dogbane Leaf Beetles mate, feed and grow on the Dogbane plant. Dogbane plants are also known as Indian Hemp, or American Hemp. This plant's fibrous stem was historically used to make thin cords and ropes, and it still is. Archaeological digs have even found remnants of such cords implying it was used by Native Americans. The plant is also known to have some medicinal uses, though not much since the 1950's. The plant actually produces a toxin, which is poisonous to humans and animals. In fact, dogs (and sheep and other livestock) were kept away from this toxic plant because ingesting its sweet, sticky sap caused death. Dogbane Leaf Beetles are not affected, however and feed on the leaves of the plant.

As a preferred host plant, the beetle also find mates on dogbane. Females lay a couple of fertilized eggs in a pile of their own feces and attach the sticky clump to the underside of a leaf. Once hatched, the Dogbane Leaf Beetle larvae chew their way out of the feces pile and then drop to the base of the plant, burrowing down to feed on the roots. The result of all of this feeding can weaken or kill the Dogbane plant.
Basic Information
Common Name: Dogbane Leaf Beetle
Other Name(s): Golden Beetle
Scientific Name: Chrysochus auratus
Category: Beetle


General Identification
Size (Adult; Length): 8mm to 11mm (0.31in to 0.43in)
Colorwheel Graphic
Identifying Colors: copper; green; brown;
Additional Descriptors: metallic, shiny, copper, emerald, flying, harmful




Taxonomic Hierarchy
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Coleoptera
Family: Chrysomelidae
Genus: Chrysochus
Species: auratus


Beetle Anatomy
Graphic showing basic anatomy of a common North American Beetle insect
1
Antennae: Beetles have a pair of antennae on the head used as sensors.
2
Head: The head is home to the insect's eyes, antennae, and mandibles (jaws).
3
Thorax: Holds the three pairs of legs as well as vital internal organs.
4
Elytron: One of two wing cases on a Beetle that protects its wings (plural: elytra).
5
Wings: Appendages used for flying and kept under the elytra until needed.
6
Abdomen: Houses organs related to circulation, reproduction, and excretion.
7
Legs: Beetles have three pairs of legs located at the thorax, numbering six legs in all.


Territorial Reach (A-to-Z)
Note: An insect's reach is not limited by lines drawn on a map and therefore species may appear in areas, regions and/or states beyond those listed below as they are driven by environmental factors (such as climate change), available food supplies and mating patterns. Grayed-out selections below indicate that the subject in question has not been reported in that particular territory. U.S. states and Canadian provinces / territories are clickable to their respective bug listings.
Alabama
Alaska
Arizona
Arkansas
California
Colorado
Connecticut
Delware
Florida
Georgia
Hawaii
Idaho
Illinois
Indiana
Iowa
Kansas
Kentucky
Louisiana
Maine
Maryland
Massachusetts
Michigan
Minnesota
Mississippi
Missouri
Montana
Nebraska
Nevada
New Hampshire
New Jersey
New Mexico
New York
North Carolina
North Dakota
Ohio
Oklahoma
Oregon
Pennsylvania
Rhode Island
South Carolina
South Dakota
Tennessee
Texas
Utah
Vermont
Virginia
Washington
West Virginia
Wisconsin
Wyoming
Canadian National Flag Graphic
Alberta
British Columbia
Manitoba
New Brunswick
Newfoundland and Labrador
Nova Scotia
Ontario
Prince Edward Island
Quebec
Saskatchewan
Mexican National Flag Graphic
Mexico


Territorial Area Map (Visual Reference Guide)
The map below showcases (in red) the states and territories of North America where the Dogbane Leaf Beetle may be found (but is not limited to). This sort of data can be useful in seeing concentrations of a particular species over the continent as well as revealing possible migratory patterns over a species' given lifespan. Some species are naturally confined by environment, weather, mating habits, food resources and the like while others see widespread expansion across most, or all, of North America.
Alaska  
Hawaii  
Prince Edward Is.  
State of Alabama graphic
State of Arizona graphic
State of Arkansas graphic
State of California graphic
State of Colorado graphic
State of Delware graphic
State of Florida graphic
State of Georgia graphic
State of Idaho graphic
State of Illinois graphic
State of Indiana graphic
State of Iowa graphic
State of Kansas graphic
State of Kentucky graphic
State of Louisiana graphic
State of Maine graphic
State of Maryland graphic
State of Michigan graphic
State of Minnesota graphic
State of Mississippi graphic
State of Missouri graphic
State of Montana graphic
State of Nebraska graphic
State of Nevada graphic
State of New England graphic
State of New Jersey graphic
State of New Mexico graphic
State of New York graphic
State of North Carolina graphic
State of North Dakota graphic
State of Ohio graphic
State of Oklahoma graphic
State of Oregon graphic
State of Pennsylvania graphic
State of South Carolina graphic
State of South Dakota graphic
State of Tennessee graphic
State of Texas graphic
State of Utah graphic
State of Virginia graphic
State of Washington graphic
State of West Virginia graphic
State of Wisconsin graphic
State of Wyoming graphic
Canadian territory of Alberta graphic
Canadian territory of British Columbia graphic
Canadian territory of Manitoba graphic
Canadian territory of New Brunswick graphic
Canadian territory of Newfoundland and Labrador graphic
Canadian territory of Ontario graphic
Canadian territory of Quebec graphic
Canadian territory of Saskatchewan graphic
Territory map graphic of the country of Mexico
Contiguous United States shape map layer graphic


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