Scyphophorus acupunctatus

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Scyphophorus acupunctatus (click on image to enlarge it)
Author: Jim Moore
Source: BugGuide

Scyphophorus acupunctatus Gyllenhal, 1838 - (sisal weevil)

The weevil attacks the leaves and stems of Agave and related plants, including Agave tequilana which is used to produce tequila. The adults feed on the leaves and lay their eggs in the base of the plant. The larvae bore into the plants and often destroy the heart of the plants, resulting in their death. The symptoms are shriveling and wilting of the leaves, but plants are usually destroyed already by the time these become apparent. In Mexico, the yield losses caused by the weevil on A. tequilana are estimated at more than 20%.

Vernacular names
• Deutsch: mexikanischer Sisalbohrer
• English: sisal weevil
agave weevil
agave snout weevil
• Español: picudo negro del agave
picudo del agave

It is apparently native to Central America but now has a world-wide distribution. It has been recorded from Africa since 1914 (Tanzania), Asia since 1916 (Indonesia) and the Pacific since 1918 (Hawaii). Insecticides are used to control the weevil.

The adult is 15-17 mm long and black. Shape and structure of the antennae, rostrum and legs are diagnostic (see illustrations below). The development time from egg to mature adult lasts around 2-3 months.

Synonyms:
Scyphophorus interstitialis