Megacopta cribraria

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Megacopta cribraria (click on image to enlarge it)
Author(s): Charles Lam
Source: Wikimedia Commons

Megacopta cribraria (Fabricius, 1798) - (kudzu bug)

This plant-sucking bug is native to Asia (apparently originating from Japan) and has been accidentally introduced into North America (first recorded from Georgia, U.S.A. in 2009). In Asia, it is regarded as an occasional pest of vegetables. In North America it has developed into an ecocomical pest of soybean, weakening stems, petioles and leaves through its feeding activity. Average yield losses were estimated at 20% in 2010 and 2011.

M. cribraria is also a nuisance pest and attacks other legumes and fruit trees. The insect will excrete a liquid as defense which creates a burning sensation on bare skin and also leaves a red welt. It aggregates on building walls in autumn in search for a hibernation shelter. In Georgia, it is common on Pueraria montana (a serious weed in that region) and can have a significant impact on its growth. From kudzu it often migrates to soybean.

Vernacular names
• English: kudzu bug
bean plataspid
• Español: chinche del kudzu

The development from egg to adult lasts about 6-8 weeks. Adults are 4-6 mm long, tan with many dark-brown spots. The development from egg, through 5 nymphal stages to mature adult lasts around 1-2 months. There are 1-3 generations per year.

For reviews see Lahiri & Reisig, 2016 and the respective page in BugwoodWiki.