Little Yellow-Brown Flea Beetle on Orange Peel

2016 April 13

Sandy found this tiny beetle on an orange in our kitchen on October 29, 2015. It was so small that it was actually getting kind of hard to see. We don’t know if it is a local species that got into the house, or an “exotic” that got carried all the way to us from wherever the oranges were grown. This possibility really opens things up, because there are probably more beetle species on any given square mile of Florida orange grove than there are in the entire Upper Peninsula of Michigan.


It has very enlarged hind legs, clearly suited for jumping.


This next photo is kind of blurry, but it does show the way that the hind jumping leg kind of folds up accordion-fashion.


It is hard to tell with such a tiny beetle, but I think it is likely to be one of the many species in the genus Longitarsus, which is a very speciose genus that includes a number of little yellow-brown things like this one.


Flea beetles have larvae that feed on plant roots, and the adults often skeletonize leaves. I don’t know if there is a species that is specific to orange trees, but if there is, then this one is probably it.

One Response
  1. April 16, 2016

    I never think about beetles jumping, I always see them creeping about. I didn’t know there were any jumpers. Way cool!

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